27 Sep 2017/Wednesday   

The Army on Tuesday said it had effectively thwarted another Pakistani BAT (border action team) operation, which is usually conducted by Pakistan army regulars in conjunction with terrorists, in the Keran sector of Kupwara along the volatile Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir.

“The BAT action was attempted by seven to eight armed intruders with the aim of destroying one of our posts in the Keran sector at about 1 pm. The intruders were backed by mortar and small arms fire from the Pakistan army posts in the area,” said a senior officer.

Pakistan’s BAT outfits have been known to have been involved in actions such as beheading of Indian soldiers as happened in an incident in May when two jawans were killed and decapitated. The mutilation was roundly criticised as barbaric and Indian forces have kept a close eye for BAT squads. Alert Indian troops from a Sikh Light Infantry battalion detected and opened fire at the intruders in the nick of time to beat them back across the LoC. “There was no casualty on our side. We are conducting fire assaults in the area,” the Army officer said.

The incident took place a day after Army chief General Bipin Rawat warned Pakistan that India could well conduct another “surgical strike” or some other similar operation if it did not stop aiding and abetting cross-border terrorism.

Cross-border raids by BATs are normally undertaken by a group of around six to seven regular Pakistan army soldiers mixed with a few terrorists after systematic reconnaissance of vulnerable spots and studying the deployment and patrolling patterns of Indian troops along the 778-km long LoC.

The Army has turned the heat on the Pakistan army with “pre-emptive and punitive fire assaults” to destroy “locations” across the LoC that aid infiltration attempts ever since two Indian soldiers were beheaded and another injured in a BAT operation in the Krishna Ghati sector in Poonch district on May 1.