Lieutenant General Ranbir Singh, the leader of the Army’s Northern Command, on Thursday said the Army was always “one step ahead” of Pakistan, and gave a “befitting reply” to each ceasefire violation. Singh was interacting with the media after inaugurating a bridge at Kalai in Jammu and Kashmir’s Poonch district, the Hindustan Times reported.

Singh said Indian security forces killed over 250 militants in 2018 and captured 54 alive, while four others surrendered. “According to the records available for the past 10 years, Army along with other armed forces have killed highest number of militants and captured many of them alive, while a number of them surrendered under pressure,” he said, according to The Indian Express.

“As per wireless and other intercepts, the Pakistani Army and militants suffered huge losses in our retaliatory actions,” Singh added. He said the Indian Army was capable of addressing any situation on the border.

Earlier in the day, Indian and Pakistan troops exchanged fire along the Line of Control in Poonch district. An unidentified defence official said Pakistani troopers used small arms to target Indian positions in the Khari Karmara area.

India on Wednesday summoned a Pakistan High Commission official to lodge its protest against the death of a civilian in unprovoked firing in the state’s Sunderbani area on January 11. On Tuesday, an officer of the Border Security Force was killed in cross-border firing in Hiranagar-Samba sector in Kathua.

Ceasefire violations by Pakistan Army have been reported from the Line of Control in Rajouri and Poonch districts since the beginning of this month.