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June 21, 1999
Dras sub-sector back in India's control
After the capture of Point 5140, Indian troops were now carrying out mopping up operations in the Dras sub-sector even as a determined assault was launched in the Tiger Hills area during the last 24 hours.
Army spokesman, Col Bikram Singh, said till now 326 Pakistani army soldiers had been killed. According to him there were about 600 to 700 Pakistani army soldiers in Indian territory who belonged to four battalions of the Northern Light Infantry.
The Indian casualties were 149 killed, 297 wounded and nine missing.
Air Force spokesman Group Captain Ganesh said like yesterday no missions were possible due to the bad weather in the Kargil sector.
Col Singh said the lifeline to Siachen glacier, the national highway 1A, was being used by convoys of the Indian Army. There were patches where the highway was under fire but that was being circumvented by the Indian army convoys, he added.
In the Batalik sub-sector, last night, Indian troops evicted the intruders from the north-west spur of point 5203 killing seven Pakistani soldiers.
Indian troops also destroyed two enemy field fortifications with artillery and mortar fire, killing three Pakistanis and injuring two, Col Singh said.
Asked whether the Indian Army would be able to sustain the position it had captured, the army spokesman said administrative pauses were taken only to see that the intruders were not allowed to settle in any position close by.
He admitted that there was an 'eyeball-to-eyeball contact' in many positions and it would take time to drive out the intruders because it was not easy to target them.
A report from Srinagar said considerable success had been achieved in the western region of Mushkoh valley. The infiltrators, who had come in about six km into Indian territory, had been driven back from the vital ridges, Col A S Chabiwal told reporters who were taken to Dras.
The colonel said the intruders had been pushed to within 2.5 km of the LOC.
Asked about reports in Pakistan indicating that the Indians were planning to open up more fronts, Col Singh said: ''We respect the sanctity of the LoC. All our operations will be confined to our side of the territory.''
He said the Pakistan Army resorted to unprovoked mortar firing in Uri, Rampur, Poonch, Bhimbergali, Naushera and Palanwala which was responded to adequately.
Col singh said after the battle of point 5140 was won, Indian troops recovered five universal machine guns, four rifles (two of them AK 46), one rocket propelled grenade launcher, eleven RPG rockets, eight UMG ammunition belt boxes, two UMG spare barrels and a radio set ANPRC with booster.
Further proof of Pakistan Army's involvement was found by the Indian troops when they recovered a pay book belonging to a junior commissioned officer, Subedar Sayyed Mohammed Shah, of 6 Northern Light Infantry.
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