New Delhi: Two Indian soldiers were killed and another two injured by Pakistani army troops who crossed into Indian territory along the Line of Control in Kashmir. The body of one of the jawans who was killed was mutilated, said sources. This is one of the worst violations of the nearly decade-long ceasefire between India and Pakistan.
The army says Pakistani troops ambushed an Indian army patrol near the town of Mendhar, about 220 kms north of Jammu. Sources say they grabbed the weapons of the soldiers who were killed.
"This is yet another grave provocation by the Pakistan Army which is being taken up sternly through official channels," the army said in a statement, naming the soldiers who died - Lance Naik Hemraj and Lance Naik Sudhakar Singh. (Read Army's full statement)
"Pak army troops, having taken advantage of thick fog & mist in the forested area, were moving towards own posts when an alert area domination patrol spotted and engaged the intruders. The firefight between Pak and own troops continued for approximately half an hour after which the intruders retreated back towards their side of Line of Control," the army said.
Tension has been simmering along the Line of Control since the weekend.
India says that on Sunday, Pakistani troops fired mortar shells at Indian army posts in the Uri sector along the Line of Control to help militants cross over into India. The Indian army retaliated.
Pakistan says India's firing was unprovoked and alleges that one of its soldiers died and another was injured. On Monday, its Foreign Office in Islamabad summoned the Indian Deputy High Commissioner Gopal Bagley to register a complaint.
New Delhi has denied that Indian troops crossed the Line of Control or violated the ceasefire.
Army sources say that in the last month, Pakistan has violated the ceasefire agreement ten times.
(With inputs from Agencies)