6 killed in 2 days as Pakistan intensifies shelling on border posts, India protests

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Jammu, Aug 16: A woman was killed and five persons were injured today as Pakistani troops intensified shelling on border posts and civilian area in Poonch and Rajouri in continued ceasefire violations that have claimed six lives in two days, drawing strong protest from India.

There were ceasefire violations by Pakistan in Poonch, Sujiyan, Balakote, Hamirpur and Mandi sectors along the Line of Control in Poonch district for the eighth consecutive day.

Pak firing kills 6 in 2 days

35-year-old Nussarat Begum died in the shelling in Behrote village in Balakote sector, where two persons were injured, officials said.

Three persons were today injured in ceasefire violations in Manjakot in Rajouri, they said, adding six persons had died and 10 were injured in the shelling and firing since yesterday.

External Affairs Ministry today summoned Pakistan High Commissioner Abdul Basit in Delhi and lodged a strong protest over the ceasefire violations.

Basit, who was summoned by Secretary-East Anil Wadhwa, later accused India of ceasefire violations and said a more effective mechanism to determine who indulges in the "unprovoked firing".

Defence Spokesman Lt Col Manish Mehta said that Pakistani Army indulged in "heavy firing and mortar shelling on forward posts and civilian villages in five sectors in Poonch since this morning."

Army retaliated effectively and heavy exchanges are going on. A police officer said that 82 mm mortars were being fired by Pakistani troops in which Nussarat was killed.

32-year old Mustaq Ahmed was also injured in Sujiyan area and has been hospitalised, he said. Due to continuous shelling from across in the border beltm, burial of those killed in the firing could not take place, locals said.

Sub-Divisional Magistrate, Mendhar, Sher Singh said people in the border areas have been asked to stay indoor. "We are trying to identify safer places to shiftthe people," he said.

PTI

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