17 soldiers martyred in Uri, Kashmir; Four Jaish E Mohammed terrorists killed  

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Udhampur, 18 September 2016: On the early hours of Sunday, a group of heavily armed terrorists targeted the rear administrative base of a unit at Uri, close to the line of control (LoC), in Kashmir. In the counter action, four terrorists have been eliminated and combing operations are in progress.

 

“The administrative base had large strength of troops of units turning over after their tour of duty who were stationed in tents/temporary shelters which caught fire, and resulted in heavy casualties. We salute the sacrifice of 17 soldiers who were martyred in the operation” Indian Army’s Northern Command said in a statement.

 

According to sources, 15 soldiers were from Bihar Regiment while two others were from Dogra Regiment. About 19 soldiers are said to be injured in the attack.

According to Army officials, the armed terrorists opened fire around 5.30 am on Sunday morning. The firefight between the terrorists and Army Personnel continued till approximately 8.30 am, during which four terrorists were killed. All four killed were foreign terrorists (suspected to be Pakistani) and had some items with them which had Pakistani markings. Initial reports indicate that the slain terrorists belong to Jaish-e-Mohammed tanzeem. Four AK 47 rifles and four Under Barrel Grenade Launchers (UBGL) along with a large number of other war like stores were recovered from them.

The terrorists fired incendiary ammunition along with automatic fire of small arms that led to army tents / temporary shelters catching fire. The tents located in the complex were to house additional troops inducted due to routine turnover of units. There have been a total of 17 Army fatal casualties. Of these, 13 – 14 casualties have been due to these tents/ shelters having caught fire.

“I must mention that the operation for clearance of the area is still in progress and a very deliberate search is being carried out of the entire area around the military complex in Uri. As such, complete details of the operation are not yet available. However, the operation is being carried out by the Indian Army in a very professional manner and the Army personnel have displayed exceptionally high standards of courage and gallantry while neutralizing the terrorists. Since the terrorists had some items with Pakistani markings, I have spoken to Pakistan DGMO and conveyed our serious concerns on the same. I would also like to mention that all the intelligence agencies are working in close synergy with the security forces and regular intelligence inputs are received from concerned agencies and necessary action is being taken accordingly,” Indian Army Director General of Military Operation (DGMO) said.

The Chief of Army Staff General General Dalbir Singh visited the site of operation and taken an ‘on the ground’ assessment of the situation. The defence minister Manohar Parrikar is also currently on his way to Srinagar and shall be updated by the Army chief on the situation.

“We salute the supreme sacrifice made by our brave soldiers following the highest traditions of Indian Army. Finally, I would like to assure you that the Indian Army remains prepared to thwart any nefarious designs and any evil designs of the adversary shall be given a befitting reply”, the statement by the DGMO said.