Pakistan Army on Tuesday asked India to produce ‘actionable evidence’ on its claim that a Pakistani special forces team sneaked across the Line of Control, beheaded two Indian security personnel and mutilated their bodies.
The issue was discussed during a hotline contact between the Director Generals of Military Operations of Pakistan and India this morning to defuse the tension.
‘Pakistan rejected Indian allegations of ceasefire violation and mutilation of bodies of Indian soldiers,’ according to a statement issued by the army.
Pakistan DGMO Maj Gen Sahir Shamshad Mirza told his Indian counterpart Lt Gen A K Bhatt that neither ceasefire violations occurred in the Sector (pointed out by India in the mutilation allegation), nor crossing of the LoC by Pakistanis troops have taken place.
“Pakistan Army is a professional military outfit and upholds the highest standards of conduct. Allegations of mutilation are an Indian attempt to divert the attention of world from situation within the Valley,” Mirza claimed.
A junior commissioned officer and a Border Security Force head constable were killed and their bodies mutilated by the Pakistan army team which sneaked about 250 metres into the Indian territory along the LoC in the Poonch district of Jammu and Kashmir.
Pakistan’s border action team crossed into the Indian side as the Pakistan Army launched heavy rocket and mortar firing on two forward posts in the Krishna Ghati sector.
The Pakistan DGMO asked his Indian counterpart to provide ‘actionable evidence’ related to the incident and urged the Indian army to look inwards to probe the incident, the army statement said.
He said that Pakistan was fully committed to maintain peace and tranquillity along the LoC. He accused Indian troops of continuously targeting innocent civilians on LoC and apprised the Indian General that continuity of such action would invite appropriate response.
“Any misadventure shall be appropriately responded at a place and time of own choosing,” the Pakistan DGMO warned.
The DGMOs contact followed after the local commanders level hotline contact was established last night at Rawlakot-Poonch sector on LOC between the army authorities of the two countries, the army statement said.
Local commanders of Pakistan also told Indian counterpart that no ceasefire violation was committed by their side.
“Indian counterpart was told that there has been no ceasefire violation from Pakistan side nor mutilation of Indian soldiers' bodies. Indian authorities were told that there is unnecessary media hype following the allegations,” the army said.
The statement also said that Pakistan remains fully committed to maintaining peace and tranquillity along the LoC and expects the same from the other side.
Pakistan Army said it hopes prudence is exercised and no steps are taken that may lead to the vitiating of the environment and affect peace along LoC.
The incident evoked a sharp reaction from India with Defence Minister Arun Jaitley saying such attacks do not even take place during war and that the whole country has full faith in the armed forces.
“Bodies of soldiers being mutilated is an extreme form of barbaric act. 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 had said.
IMAGE: Chief of Army Staff General Bipin Rawat visits frontier areas in North Kashmir. He also interacted with commanders and troops deployed along the LoC. Photograph: ANI