JAMMU: A havaldar in the Indian Army was killed on Saturday in unprovoked firing by Pakistan on forward posts and villages in two sectors along the Line of Control (LoC) and the International Border (IB) in Jammu and Kashmir, officials said.
The casualty comes barely a week after multiple ceasefire violations by Pakistani troops along the LoC in north Kashmir left 11 people, including five security personnel, dead on November 13.
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.
The officials said the Indian Army retaliated effectively to silence the Pakistani guns, and the cross-border firing between the two sides continued for quite some time.
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.
In a statement, a defence spokesman 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," he said.
The officials said Pakistani Rangers also resorted to unprovoked firing along the IB in Hiranagar sector of Kathua district.
The firing on Satpal, Manyari, Ladwal and Karol Krishna border outpost areas started around 10 pm on Friday, prompting strong and effective retaliation by the Border Security Force, the officials said.
Cross-border skirmishes continued till 5.25 am on Saturday, and there was no report of any casualty or damage on the Indian side, they added.