An army havildar was killed and a naik injured in unprovoked mortar shelling and small arms fire by Pakistani troops during the wee hours of Saturday along the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir’s Rajouri district. An Army spokesperson Lt Colonel Devender Anand confirmed the news. The Indian troops retaliated befittingly and the exchange of fire continued till 4 am.
Havaldar Patil Sangram Shivaji, who was manning a forward post, was critically injured in the Pakistani firing in the Lam area of Rajouri district’s Nowshera sector around 1 am, the officials said, adding he later succumbed to the injuries. Another soldier also sustained injuries and is currently undergoing treatment at a military hospital, they said.
In a statement, the Indian Army said Havaldar Shivaji, a resident of Nigave village of Kolhapur in Maharashtra, was a brave, highly motivated and sincere soldier. “The nation will always remain indebted to him for his supreme sacrifice and devotion to duty,” it further added. Patil was from the 16 Maratha Light Infantry of the Indian Army. He is the second soldier from Kolhapur district to have lost life in ceasefire violation along the LoC in over a week’s time.
Patil hailed from Nigave village in Karvir taluka of Kolhapur district and belonged to a farmer family. A family friend of the deceased soldier and an Ex-Serviceman from the same village, Mhadji Patil told Express over phone, “Sangram Patil belonged to a farmer family. He is survived by his parents, wife, two children, and brother’s family. The entire village stands with the family which has lost its loved one.” Officials from the Kolhapur District Sainik Welfare office said they will be coordinating with the Army authorities for the transport of mortal remains of the soldiers.
Taking to Twitter, the general officer commanding (GOC) of the Jammu-based White Knight Corps and all other ranks saluted the soldier and offered their condolences to his family.