Srinagar: A day after killing three Indian soldiers, the body of one of whom was mutilated, on the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir, the Pakistani troops on Wednesday violated ceasefire yet again and resorted to heavy shelling and firing at Indian positions along the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu region, injuring three Border Security Force (BSF) troopers.
The troopers, wounded in the border district of Rajouri, were taken to a hospital, a police officer said.
"Doctors described their condition as stable," the police officer said.
In response to the offensive, the Army today launched a counter-offensive against Pakistan along the LoC.
The offensive came hours after the Indian Army vowed "heavy retribution" to the attack on its soldiers.
Brigadier, Northern Command, S Gotra, said the Indian Army launched a counter-offensive along the LoC in retaliation to yesterday's offensive in Machhil sector of Kashmir.
The Indian Army posts are responding strongly and giving a befitting reply, Defence PRO Manish Mehta said.
The Pakistan Army fired at Indian posts along the LoC in Bhimber Gali, Krishna Ghati and Nowshera sectors of Poonch and Rajouri districts, Mehta told news agency IANS.
"They are using 120 mm mortars and automatics to target our positions, our posts are responding strongly and giving a befitting reply," he added.
In the cross-LoC attack by suspected Pakistani terrorists, three Indian soldiers were yesterday killed, with the body of one of them being mutilated.
The ambush on the Army patrol took place in Machhil sector of Kashmir, following which the Indian Army vowed heavy "retribution".
The Northern Command spokesman had yesterday tweeted, "3 soldiers killed in action on LC (Line of Control) in Machhal. Body of one soldier mutilated." He said the "retribution will be heavy for this cowardly act."
The soldier who was mutilated has been identified as 31-year-old Rifleman Prabhu Singh from Khirjankhas village in Jodhpur district, Rajasthan.
The other two soldiers are Gunner Manoj K Kushwah and Rifleman Shashank K Singh, both from Gazipur district of Uttar Pradesh.
Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar had yesterday condemned the "cowardly and brutal" killings of three Indian soldiers.
"The cowardly act of mutilating the body of one of the Indian soldiers had all the signatures of a BAT (Border Action Team) operation by Pakistan army using terrorists and its soldiers," said officials.
Spokesperson of Pakistan's Foreign Ministry M Nafees Zakaria had denied mutilation of any Indian soldier by Pakistani forces.
This is the second such incident of mutilation of the body of an Indian soldier in the same sector since October 28.
On that day, terrorists, aided by the cover fire by the Pakistani Army, had crossed the Line of Control and killed 27-year-old Indian soldier Sepoy Mandeep Singh and mutilated his body in Macchil sector. One attacker was killed in that incident.
In response, the Indian Army had carried out a heavy assault in Keran sector of Jammu and Kashmir, destroying four Pakistani posts.
During the Kargil war in 1999, Captain Saurabh Kalia, and Sepoys Arjunram Baswana, Mula Ram Bidiasar, Naresh Singh Sinsinwar, Bhanwar Lal Bagaria and Bhika Ram Mudh of 4 Jat Regiment were captured by Pakistani troops and brutally tortured.
On January 08, 2013, Pakistani soldiers entered Indian territory in Krishna Ghati sector of the border and killed two Indian soldiers -- Lance Naik Hemraj and Lance Naik Sudhakar Singh. Indian officials said bodies of both were mutilated, and Hemraj's body was decapitated.
According to figures given by Minister of State for Defence Subhash Bhamre in the Lok Sabha last week, till November 14 this year, eight Army personnel have been killed and 59 injured.
In a written reply in the Rajya Sabha on Tuesday, Bhamre also said that there has been an increase in infiltration attempts since the killing of militant leader Burhan Wani on July 8.
Article 4 of the Third Geneva Convention protects captured military personnel, some guerrilla fighters, and certain civilians. It applies from the moment a prisoner is captured until he or she is released or repatriated. One of the main provisions of the convention makes it illegal to torture prisoners and states that a prisoner can only be required to give their name, date of birth, rank and service number if applicable.
(With Agency inputs)