Army Jawan, Militant Killed, 4-5 Ultras Trapped On LoC

14 October 2015
The Daily Excelsior

Jammu: An Army soldier and a militant were killed as troops foiled major infiltration attempt on the Line of Control (LoC) in Balnoi sector of Krishna Ghati in Poonch district this afternoon after heavy exchange of firing with a group of four to five militants. This was the first infiltration attempt by the militants on the LoC in Jammu after Brigade Commander level meeting between Indo-Pak troops at Chakan-Da-Bagh in Poonch on September 21 and Director General level talks between BSF and Rangers for four days from September 9 to 12 in New Delhi. Official sources told the Excelsior that troops spotted group of four to five militants while trying to infiltrate into the Indian territory in broad day light at 3 pm today from the LoC in Balnoi sector of Krishna Ghati in Poonch district. As the militants came within the firing range, the troops retaliated immediately, leading to exchange of gun fighting, which continued for about an hour. An Army soldier Lance Naik Govind Singh, who was part of Army's Special Forces (para commando), sustained serious injuries in the gun battle. Troops evacuated him from the spot and airlifted him to the Military Hospital but he succumbed to serious bullet wounds sustained by him while fighting the militants. Singh hailed from Uttarakhand. Sources said the troops continued to engage the militants and gunned down one militant tonight. The operation was still on with troops trying to eliminate rest of the militants, who were making desperate attempt to infiltrate into the Indian territory by resorting to firing on the troops. 'The militants were four to five in numbers and were equipped with heavy fire arms and explosive material, some of which they used during encounter with the troops,' sources said, adding the gun battle continued till late tonight. The operation could resume tomorrow morning as weather was very dark along the LoC in Balnoi tonight. Latest reports indicated that the remaining militants hadn't retreated so far to Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK) but could make an attempt to return in the midnight in view of heavy presence of troops on Indian side of the LoC. Sources confirmed that there was no ceasefire violation from Pakistan army during infiltration attempt by the militants. However, they said, this was the first intrusion bid on the LoC in entire Jammu sector after successful Brigade Commander level talks between the Armies of India and Pakistan on September 21 at Chakan-Da-Bagh in Poonch sector and Director General level dialogue between BSF and Rangers in New Delhi for four days from September 9 to 12. After the two high level contacts between India and Pakistan, the ceasefire violations including heavy mortar shelling and firing had completely stopped, both on the LoC and IB. With peace prevailing on the borders, the civilians had started working in the fields right up to the Zero Line on LoC and IB. Sources said the troops were determined to thwart any infiltration attempt on the LoC and IB. Only yesterday, General Officer Commanding (GOC) of Srinagar based 15 Corps Lt Gen Satish Dua had said in Awantipora that over 300 militants were waiting at launching pads to infiltrate into the Indian territory. Troops had reports that the infiltration attempts could increase before onset of winter, when some infiltration routes become snow bounds. Troops have already geared up themselves to face such a situation from the militants, sources said.