Pakistani and Indian forces traded artillery fire along the border region of Kathua sector in Jammu and Kashmir, killing two people and wounding eight, officials said Saturday.
Both Pakistan and India blamed each other for starting the fire that began Friday night. This latest violence comes after Islamabad accused Indian forces of killing two of its soldiers Wednesday in a crossfire that also killed an Indian soldier.
In a statement Saturday, the Pakistani military said that Indian forces violated the cease-fire agreement between the two countries with an unprovoked barrage of artillery Friday night near the city of Sialkot, killing a 13-year-old girl and wounding another child. It said Pakistani soldiers returned fire.
In India, police officer Rajesh Kumar said Pakistani shelling in the Kathua sector killed a woman and wounded seven villagers. Parekh, a Border Security Force officer, said the firing continued Saturday in at least half a dozen places. “One place goes quiet, the firing starts at another place,” Parekh said. Indian officials blamed Pakistan for beginning the fire without provocation.
Meanwhile, district administration initiated evacuation of border villager’s to safer areas in wake of heavy shelling. Officials told CNS that buses along with security have been deputed to Bobiyan, Pansar, Paharpur and Lachipura for safe evacuation of the people. Relief camps have also been made operational at Hiranagar and Marheen. Relief measures under Mission Hifazat are being taken by district administration.
Four persons injured in Hiranagar sector have been identified as Suresh Singh son of Multan Singh resident of Nau Chak. Age 30, Mansu son of Vijay Kumar Age 10 resident of Chhan Lal Din, Rajni W/O Prem Kumar age 30 resident of Chhan Lal Din and Madhu Bala w/o Pawan Kumar resident of Chhan Lal Din.
As of now 300 people have been shifted to relief camps. 3 persons have been shifted to GMC Jammu for further treatment out of 4 injured persons.
Deputy Commissioner Kathua Dr Shahid Iqbal Choudhary and senior officer of administration and police are monitoring the emergency response centre Hiranagar to coordinate relief and rescue operation.