The army, in its statement, has vowed to give a befitting reply to Pakistan “in the same language”.
Under the cover of heavy mortar fire, a Pakistani Special Forces team sneaked 250 metres across the Line of Control into the Poonch sector and beheaded two Indian security personnel on Monday, officials said.
The Indian Army vowed an “appropriate” response to the “despicable act”, which significantly took place a day after Pakistan army chief Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa visited some areas along the LoC and promised support to the Kashmiris.
The Pakistan army denied that it was involved in any attack.
Defence Minister Arun Jaitley said in Delhi that the “sacrifice (of the two killed) will not go in vain” and the Indian armed forces will react “appropriately” to the “inhuman act” of the Pakistani troops.
“This is a reprehensible and an inhuman act. Such attacks do not take place during war,” he said.
“Bodies of soldiers being mutilated is an extreme form of barbaric act. The government of India strongly condemns this act. The whole country has full faith in our armed forces which will react appropriately to the act,” Jaitley said.
The attack was carried out by the Border Action Team, which comprises the special forces, under the cover of shelling by Pakistani troops in Krishna Ghati Sector in Poonch district of Jammu and Kashmir, officials said.
The army issued a statement saying that the bodies of an army soldier and a Border Security Force head constable were mutilated.
The soldiers killed were Naib Subedar Paramjeet Singh of 22 Sikh Infantry and Head Constable Prem Sagar of 200th Battalion of BSF. A BSF constable Rajinder Singh was injured but is out of danger.
The BAT team had set up an ambush to target the patrol party of the Indian soldiers while the Pakistan Army engaged two Indian forward defence locations with rockets and mortar bombs, the officials said.
“It was a pre-planned operation of the Pakistan Army. They had pushed in BAT teams over 250 meters deep inside Indian territory and set up ambushes for a long period to carry out the attack,” a senior army official said.
“The Pakistani army posts attacked two FDL posts with rockets and mortar bombs at 0830 hours and engaged them,” the official said.
“Their target was a seven to eight-member patrol party, which had come out of the post,” the official said.
He said as the posts were engaged, the patrol party men ran here and there.
“Two members of the patrol party, who were left behind, were attacked by the BAT team and killed. Their bodies were badly mutilated,” the official said.
“Pakistani Army carried out unprovoked rocket and mortar firing on two forward posts on the Line of Control in Krishna Ghati Sector (in Poonch district) this morning,” a defence ministry spokesman said.
“Simultaneously, a BAT action was launched on a patrol operating in between the two posts,” said a statement issued by the Northern Army Command.
“In an unsoldierly act by the Pakistani Army, the bodies of two of our soldiers in the patrol were mutilated,” the spokesman said, adding, “Such a despicable act of the Pakistan Army will be appropriately responded to.”
According to reports, at 0825 hours, Pakistani army’s 647 Mujahid Battalion targeted India’s forward post ‘Kirpan’ from its post ‘Pimple’ in Krishna Ghati sector.
It was followed by attack on another forward post in the same area.
A senior BSF officer said that about 0830 hours, there was heavy firing from the Pakistani army posts at BSF posts at LoC in Krishna Ghati sector of Poonch district with rockets and automatic weapons.
“They attacked with rockets a forward BSF post (which lies) ahead of the fencing and opened heavy fire from automatic weapons. They violated the ceasefire,” the BSF
The Indian troops retaliated and the firing continued for some time intermittently.
In Islamabad, the Pakistani army said it did not commit any ceasefire violation on LoC or a BAT action in the Krishna Ghati sector.
In April this year, there were seven ceasefire violations by the Pakistani troops along the LOC in Poonch and Rajouri sectors of Jammu and Kashmir.
May–July 1999: During the 1999 Kargil conflict, Captain Saurabh Kalia was tortured by his Pakistani captors who later handed over his mutilated body to India.
February 2000: Pakistani terrorist and Al Qaeda member Ilyas Kashmiri had led a raid on the Indian Army’s “Ashok Listening Post” in the Nowshera sector to kill seven Indian soldiers. Even then, Kashmiri had taken back to Pakistan the head of a 24-year-old Indian jawan, Bhausaheb Maruti Talekar of the 17 Maratha Light Infantry.
June 2008: A soldier of the 2/8 Gorkha Rifles lost his way and was captured by a Pakistani Border Action Team in Kel sector. His body was found beheaded after a few days.
January 2013: One soldier was beheaded and another killed by Pakistani troops after they crossed over into Indian territory in the Mendhar sector of Jammu and Kashmir.
October 28, 2016: A soldier was mutilated by a terrorist in Kupwara’s Machil near the Line of Control while the army was engaged in cross-border firing with Pakistan’s army.
November 22, 2016: In a cross-LoC attack by suspected Pakistani terrorists, three Indian soldiers were killed, with body of one of them being mutilated.