At least three civilians were killed after Pakistan forces reportedly opened fire along the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir’s Poonch district late on Friday night, according to ANI. Poonch district Senior Superintendent of Police RK Angral confirmed the deaths, which took place in Krishna Ghati sector.
The victims were a woman and her children, NDTV reported. They have been identified as 24-year-old Rubana Kosar, five-year-old Fazan and nine-month-old Shabnam. Another person was severely wounded in the shelling in Salotri village near the Line of Control.
According to the police, Pakistani forces targeted civilian areas with heavy guns and mortar bombs. The Indian forces retaliated effectively, they added.
There was another ceasefire violation by Pakistan along the Line of Control in Rajouri district on Saturday, which was responded to by the Indian Army, PTI reported.
Earlier on Friday, a woman was injured in cross-border firing in Mankote area of Poonch. Pakistani forces also reportedly targeted villages in Krishnaghati and Balakote sectors.
Another ceasefire violation was reported in Poonch on Thursday, and later in Rajouri district. Both India and Pakistan had exchanged heavy fire.
Authorities have asked locals to refrain from stepping outside their homes amid the shelling. The local administration has asked educational institutes in the region to remain closed temporarily.
The firing came amid an escalation of tensions between both countries, even as Pakistan on Friday night released Indian Air Force pilot Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman. Varthaman was captured when the MiG-21 jet he was flying was brought down by Pakistani aircraft inside Pakistan-occupied Kashmir on Wednesday. The aircraft was taken down during a dogfight between Indian and Pakistani planes, the first such aerial skirmish since 1971.