ceasefire violation jammu kashmir pakistan
A person injured in shelling by Pakistan on the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir being treated in a Government Medical College and Hospital in Jammu. [Representational Image]IANS

Even as Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif spoke of "promoting friendly ties between the two neighbours" while greeting Indians on their 69th Independence Day, his troops have been resorting to unprovoked firing at the border since 15 August, killing about 11 Indian civilians and injuring 38 people in two days.

At least six civilians, including a woman and a minor, have been killed and 15 others injured in the ceasefire violation by Pakistani troops at Balakot region of Poonch district in Jammu & Kashmir on Sunday.

This is the second ceasefire violation in two consecutive days; on Saturday, in a similar unprovked firing by Pakistani soldiers, at least five Indian civilians, including a 10-year-old boy, were killed and 23 injured.

"The Pakistan Army again resorted to indiscriminate shelling and gunfire in Mandi and Balakot sectors of Poonch district," Defence Ministry Spokesman Colonel Manish Mehta told IANS.

"The firing started at 3 am and is still on. Our troops retaliated appropriately to the firing," he added.

The army has asked the civilians residing in the border areas to evacuate, as heavy mortar shelling is going on the area since 12 in the night.

The villagers are scared to come out of their homes to pick up the bodies of the dead.

On 15 August, as India celebrated its 69th Independence Day, Pakistani troops resorted to unprovoked firing along the Line of Control in Mendhar, Mandi and Saujiyan sectors of Poonch district early at 7:30 am. Indian troops retaliated with equal force and the cross border firing ended only at 7 in the evening.

The ceasefire violation left at least five civilians, including a 10-year-old boy, dead, besides injuring 23 people.  

Three civilians were killed when their car was hit by a shell fired from the Pakistan side in Mendhar sector of Poonch district, Jammu divisional commissioner Pawan Kotwal told IANS. The fourth person died while undergoing treatment at a hospital in Rajouri.

The boy succumbed to his injuries late in the night.

"10-year-old boy identified as Moin Khan succumbed to injuries late Saturday. With this, the toll in shelling over civilians in Balakote sector of the Poonch district has risen to five," a senior police official told IANS.

India and Pakistan did not exchange sweets on the occasion of their repective Independence Days in the wake of the ongoing tension on the border.

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