Initial reports indicate that the Jaish-e-Mohammed militant outfit was behind the attack on the Indian Army's Uri base near the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir's Baramulla district, Director General Military Operations Lieutenant General Ranbir Singh said. He added that he had spoken to his Pakistani counterpart regarding the attack because they had found items with the militants that had "Pakistani markings" on them, ANI reported.

A total of 17 Indian soldiers were killed after four militants attacked the Uri Army base on Sunday. All the militants were gunned down. Singh said they had recovered four AK-47 guns from the militants, and that 13-14 of the men were killed because of fire in the tent. A number of Army troops were passing through the area and living in temporary shelters at the Uri base.

"I assure you that the Indian Army is prepared for any evil design by the adversary and will give a befitting response," Singh said, adding that the Army was carrying out a "deliberate and methodical" search of the area in and around military complex in Uri where the militants opened fire.

Defence Minister Manohar Parikar has reached Srinagar, where he will be briefed on the ground situation by the Indian Army chief. "All intelligence agencies and security forces are working in close synergy, and necessary action is being taken agnst various inputs received," the DGMO added.

Reactions come in:

Reactions to the carnage came in soon after Prime Minister Narendra Modi said "all those behind this despicable attack will not go unpunished".

Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti said the attack seemed to have been aimed at "triggering fresh violence" and "creating a war-like situation in the region", ANI reported. She added, "Jammu and Kashmir has always been the worst victim of Indo-Pak hostility, and it's people have been paying a colossal price for it for more than six decades."

Mufti and a number of other top politicians condemned the attack and called for strong action against Pakistan, which officials believe was involved. Jammu and Kashmir Deputy Chief Minister Nirmal Singh said it was an ongoing "proxy war" in the state, and that Pakistan was working on disturbing peace in the Valley, PTI reported.

President Pranab Mukherjee said said he strongly condemned the "outrageous terrorist attack" and paid his tribute to the "brave soldiers who made the supreme sacrifice". "India will not be cowed down by such attacks. We will thwart the evil designs of terrorists and their backers," he said on Twitter.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said, "It is clear that our neighbour is using terror to create menace in our country, which is also supported by some stone-pelters." He also warned that Pakistan will be left isolated if it continued to adopt such measures, ANI reported.

Bharatiya Janata Party National General Secretary Ram Madhav on Facebook said Prime Minister Narendra Modi's promise that those behind the Uri terror attack will not go unpunished was right approach to the incident. "For one tooth, the complete jaw," he said, adding that showing "restraint in the face of repeated terror attacks betrays inefficiency and incompetence".

A fidayeen group was suspected to have carried out the Uri attack. Former Army chief Shankar Roy Choudhury, a veteran who fought in the 1965 Indo-Pak war and the 1971 Bangaldesh indepence war, told NDTV that it was time for India to "raise its own fidayeen" to respond to such incidents.

Furthermore, former home secretary RK Singh said Pakistan's Army and Inter-Intelligence Service used terrorist groups as fronts to carry out these attacks. "If you term it as a terror attack, you're misleading yourself. Only way to handle these attacks is to hit back," he told ANI.