After a brief lull, Pakistani Rangers resumed unprovoked shelling on the Border Security Force (BSF) posts and civilian areas killing one jawan along the International Border (IB) in the Samba district of Jammu division on Monday.The cross border shelling has sparked fresh wave of fear prompting at least 9,000 people living in the border villages to migrate and take shelter in temporary relief camps set up by the Jammu and Kashmir government in safer places.Inspector General of BSF, Jammu frontier, Rakesh Sharma told dna that Pakistani Rangers started fresh firing and shelling from 2 pm which was continuing. “In the incident one of our boys was martyred,” he said.BSF troops immediately responded to the shelling to silence the Pakistani guns. “We are retaliating. The firing is continuing,” Sharma said.Pakistani Rangers also targeted border villages in the Hiranagar sector of Kathua district damaging more than 15 houses. “The shelling started at 2.30 pm in which 15 houses have been damaged,” Shahid Iqbal Chaudhary, district development commissioner of Kathua told dna.What has added a dangerous dimension to the shelling is that Pakistan Rangers are using long range weaponry to target the villages deep in the hinterland on the Indian side. “Their shells are now landing in four kilometer range”, said Shahid.Pakistani Rangers were earlier using mortar shells which could hit the target in the range of one and three kilometers. The Pakistani Rangers are now using long range mortars possibly 81 mm shells which can hit targets in four to five kilometers range.The firing has triggered massive migration from border villages in the twin districts of Samba and Kathua. “People are in process of shifting to safer places. So far more around 4,000 people have migrated in Samba,” Mubarak Singh, DDC Samba told dna.Sixteen temporary shelter camps have been set up in Samba district for the people displaced by the cross border shelling. A control room has also been established which is functioning round the clock to help the people in distress.Around 4,500 people have migrated from 11 villages after shelling across International Border in Kathua district. District administration has established 10 relief camps at Haria Chak, Hiranagar, Nagial, Plat, Chak Kanha, Banyari, Chadwal, Sherpur, Nagri and Sallan where 1,841 migrants of 491 families have been provided safe accommodation and basic amenities.”The number of people shifting from border villages is expected to rise given the fresh shelling,” said Shahid. Rajnath reviews internal securityAgainst the backdrop Pakistan resuming shelling targeting scores of Border Out Posts and civilian areas along International Border in Samba and Kathua districts, Union home minister Rajnath Singh on Monday chaired a high-level meeting in New Delhi to review country’s internal security. The attended by National Security Advisor Ajit Doval, Intelligence Bureau chief Dineshwar Sharma, Research and Analysis Wing chief Rajinder Khanna and other officials.Though officially meeting was described as ‘routine’, sources said the home minister told the security agencies to reply any provocation with full force. Officials said the situation along the International Border with Pakistan along with internal security was on agenda. The meeting was also told that security along the coastal areas in Gujarat has been tightened after a Pakistani boat was intercepted which later exploded near the Porbandar coast on the intervening night of December 31 and January 1.

Original article:  

Pakistan ups the ante on International Border, kills one BSF trooper; over 9,000 villagers in samba, Kathua move to safer places