The Pakistan Army gave cover fire to infiltrating terrorists and targeted quadcopters of the Indian Army during a bid to cross the Line of Control in Baramulla district of Jammu and Kashmir on Saturday that was foiled with the killing of three militants, officials said.
Addressing a press conference in north Kashmir's Uri, Brigadier P M S Dhillon said the operation at Hathlanga in the Uri sector along the LoC was launched early Saturday following specific inputs about infiltration attempts by Pakistan-based outfits.
"We had been receiving intelligence inputs that Pakistani outfits were trying to infiltrate into Uri to destabilise peace in Jammu and Kashmir. So, we strengthened our counter-infiltration and surveillance grid," he said.
"At 6.40 am this morning, despite bad weather, an ambush noticed three to four terrorists trying to cross the LoC in the Hathlanga area. Immediately contact was established and the firefight continued for two hours," he added.
The officer said the army used under-barrel grenade launchers (UBGL), multi-grenade launchers (MGL), and rocket launchers to neutralise the terrorists.
"One terrorist was neutralised. The ambush party then realised that two injured terrorists had changed their movement. The ambush party then got into a second firefight with them at around 9.15 am which continued for about half an hour and resulted in the neutralisation of the second terrorist," he said.
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Brigadier Dhillon said the third injured terrorist "exfiltrated" with the help of firing from a nearby Pakistani post.
"The Pakistani Army post gave fire support for his exfiltration and fired towards us. They fired on our quadcopters as well. According to our estimate, the injured terrorist succumbed about 300 metres from the Pakistani post, in the general area. The weather is very bad, but the search continues in the area," he said.
The officer said three terrorists from Pakistan have been neutralised in the operation and the bodies of the two have been retrieved.
"This shows how the Pakistan Army backs terrorists and lends them full support to infiltrate. It also establishes how Pakistan Army is involved in destabilising peace in Kashmir," he said.
The security forces also recovered an AK-47 and AK-74 rifle, seven magazines, a five-kg IED, some ammunition, a Chinese pistol and some grenades along with Indian and Pakistani currency from the terrorists.
"We think they wanted to use the IED at some sensitive target, including minority pocket or security forces' establishment," Dhillon said.
The infiltration bid and the subsequent encounter comes at a time when an operation is underway in Anantnag district to neutralise terrorists who have taken positions in the forest area in a hilly terrain. The gunfight entered its fourth day on Saturday.