Indian soldier beheaded in Machhil: How the situation at LoC went from bad to worse - Firstpost
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Indian soldier beheaded in Machhil: How the situation at LoC went from bad to worse


The situation at the borders in Jammu and Kashmir seems to worsening with every passing day. On Tuesday, in a cross-Line of Control (LoC) attack by suspected Pakistani terrorists, three Indian soldiers were killed, with the body of one of them being mutilated in second such incident in less than a month, triggering outrage in this country.

PTI reported that the ambush on army patrol took place in Machhil sector of Kashmir, following which the Indian army vowed heavy "retribution".

"A counter-infiltration patrol party of Indian army was ambushed by terrorists ahead of the fencing along LoC in forest belt in Machhil sector in Kupwara district today," a senior Army officer said.

A defence spokesman said heavy cross-Line of Control shelling was going on at four places in Machhil sector from 3.30 pm.

Representational image. Reuters

Representational image. Reuters

"Around 1530 hour, heavy cross-LoC shelling has started from both sides at Dana Machhil, Ashni, Ringsar and Ringsar Payeen in Machhil sector of Kupwara district," he said. He did not give any further details.

A report in Daily Mail also said that the terrorists were allegedly backed by the Pakistan Army because as soon as the encounter between the soldiers and terrorists began, the Pakistan Army posts from across the LoC also began firing in that direction to prevent the Indian Army from sending reinforcements.

This is a second such incident where a jawan's body was mutilated in the same sector since 28 October. On that day, terrorists, aided by the cover fire by Pakistani Army, had crossed the LoC and killed an Indian army jawan and mutilated his body in the Macchil sector. One attacker was killed in that incident.

In response to the beheading of the Indian soldier on Tuesday, India strongly protested to Pakistan when Indian Deputy High Commissioner JP Singh, who was called in by Director General (South Asia and Saarc) Mohammad Faisal, conveyed that Pakistani troops were deliberately targeting the civilian areas, resulting in heavy casualties.

News reports have also said that the Indian Army has begun counter operations and is targeting various Pakistani posts along the LoC.

Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar also condemned the attack.

Jammu and Kashmir Deputy Chief Minister Nirmal Kumar Singh also expressed anguish at the attack. Reacting strongly over the killings of soldiers, Singh termed it as a "cowardly act" and the incident reflected the "barbaric attitude" of the forces on the other side.

On the other hand, Pakistan rejected the "Indian media reports" of the mutilation of the soldier's body and said it was just "a blatant attempt to malign Pakistan". M Nafees Zakaria, spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Pakistan, also said that it was India which constantly violated the ceasefire.

The Indian Express also reported that terrorists saw a safe passage in Machhil because it was considered to be one of the 'shortest' and 'safest' infiltration routes into Kupwara across the LoC. The Macchil sector, which is situated at an altitude of over 6,500 feet, is marked by dense forests and weather and terrain which make it inhospitable.

With inputs from PTI

First Published On : Nov 23, 2016 13:36 IST

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