Almost the entire stretch of the 198-km-long International Border — barring the “chicken neck” area of Akhnoor — saw heavy shelling by Pakistan and retaliation by the Border Security Force on Tuesday, resulting in injuries to 20, including a BSF jawan.
The local authorities have got more than 100 border villages vacated and shifted the residents to shelter camps. Bunker vehicles have also been put into service.
After Sunday, Pakistan Rangers intensified shelling in Arnia late on Monday night and also targeted the Samba, Hiranagar, RS Pura, Kathua, Rajbagh, Suchetgarh and Ramgarh sectors.
Four civilians were injured in RS Pura, two in Samba and one in Kathua, and BSF Constable Chouhan Singh in Rajbagh. Eleven civilians were injured in Samba’s Ramgarh sector on Tuesday evening.
It was a sleepless Monday night for the villagers of Arnia and RS Pura at the shelter camps. “The shelling was intense and without a break this time. We fled so fast that we left most of our belongings, including animals, behind. There is bound to be apprehension,” said Shinda Chowdhary of Treva in Arnia, 40 km from Jammu.
“Of 120 villages along the IB in Jammu district, 90 are affected and we have evacuated people. Shelter camps have been established in every area and all facilities are being given free of cost,” said Arun Manhas, Additional Deputy Commissioner, Jammu.
Seven persons were injured in Arnia sector on Monday.
India to attend SCO meet on terror in Pak
New Delhi: An Indian delegation will attend an anti-terrorism conference being held in Islamabad under the banner of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO). Pakistan will host its first SCO meeting after becoming a member of the organisation along with India in June 2017. India’s presence assumes significance since it had boycotted the South Asian Association of Regional Cooperation (SAARC) summit in Islamabad in 2016 citing Pakistan’s continuing support to cross-border terrorism.