To counter Indian Army’s aggressive posture along the Line of Control Pakistan Army is learnt to have rushed ‘snipers’ (sharp shooters) to all its forward posts to target Indian jawans.
In the last six months more than one dozen Indian soldiers have lost their lives in different sniping incidents.
On Tuesday an Indian soldier deployed at a forward post in Bhimbder Gali area of Poonch was targeted from across the Line of Control by jawans of Pak Army’s 650 Mujahid.
Defence Spokesman in Jammu, however, denied reports of sniping.
These snipers remain parked at odd locations close to the forward posts to target Indian jawans proceeding on long patrols and forward locations.
When border skirmishes peaked in the aftermath of Surgical strikes by the elite Indian commandos the jawans were even directed to use trenches to move between bunkers across all the forward posts. These instructions were given to the post commanders to minimise the risk factor. These instructions were issued after closely observing a pattern of sniper attacks by the Pak Army from across the LoC.
Late monday night another Indian jawan lost his life in ‘accidental’ firing while he was moving through communication trench on the orders of post commander in Mendhar sector.
In comparison to Indian Army, Pak Army relies more on their team of snipers to target enemy jawans.
According to official sources not more than 2 snipers are attached with one Batallion deployed along the LoC.
Indian snipers follow the simple mantra dushman shikar hum shikari, while keeping a watch on the movement of enemy posts from a forward location.
Armed with high precision sniper rifle these sharp shooters are an asset of a unit deployed on the Line of Control. They have the capacity to shoot a target of 1,200 metres away and prevent any physical assault on own post.
On the other hand snipers of Pak Army can target the forward Indian posts from a distance ranging between 1 km to 2 km using their high precision sniper rifles.
In some areas Pak Army soldiers even enjoy the advantage of high altitude and can easily target routine movement of Indian jawans inside their posts.
According to official sources, Sepoy Sudesh Kumar of 6 Rajput was killed by a Pak sniper, a fortnight after the surgical strikes on October 16. Kumar was on patrol duty along the LoC in Rajouri when he was hit by a sniper. A week later BSF jawan Gurnam Singh was killed along the International border on October 21. He was shot in the head in Hiranagar sector, Jammu.
Rifleman Sandeep Singh Rawat was hit in the neck, killing him instantly as he stood guard along the fence in the Kupwara sector on November 9, 2016.
On March 9 this year, sepoy Deepak Jagannath Ghadge of Maharashtra died after he was hit by a similar sniper fire by Pakistani troops in Gulpur area of Poonch.
On April 2, a JCO was killed in an IED blast near the LoC in Poonch district. It was suspected that the mine was planted by ‘rogue’ elements from Pakistan inside the Indian territory to inflict casualties.
A few months ago, an internal report of the Army HQ had clearly stated, “Snipers are force multipliers to any infantry battalion. The high standard of sniper training and their imaginative employment leads to decisive and out-of-proportion results.”
In view of the rising incidents of sniper fire from Pakistan, even the BSF has taken preventive measures such as placing nets in border outposts and observation posts.