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5 Soldiers Killed, 5 Injured in terrorist ambush in J&K’s Kathua

The incident occurred around 3:30 PM in Badnota village of Loi Malhar in Billawar tehsil, about 120 km from the district headquarters, close to the boundary with Doda district.

In a tragic incident on Monday afternoon, an army truck was attacked in a terrorist ambush in the Kathua district of Jammu and Kashmir, leading to the deaths of five soldiers and injuries to five others. The incident occurred around 3:30 PM in Badnota village of Loi Malhar in Billawar tehsil, about 120 km from the district headquarters, close to the boundary with Doda district.

According to officials, the terrorists, numbering two to three, launched their attack by first throwing a grenade at the army truck before opening fire with automatic weapons. “An army truck was ambushed by armed terrorists in Badnota village of Loi Malhar area in Billawar on Monday afternoon. The terrorists believed to be two to three in number, first lobbed a grenade and then resorted to firing from automatic weapons. At least four soldiers were killed and six others injured in the ambush,” a police officer stated.

The injured soldiers were quickly transported to a military hospital for medical attention. The army has yet to release an official statement on the incident.

Initial Reports on the Terrorist Ambush in Kathua

Earlier, police reported, “Exchange of fire between terrorists and security forces in the Machhedi area of Kathua district. Two Army personnel were injured. A massive search operation has been launched.” The firefight continued at intervals into the evening as security forces pursued the attackers.

terrorist ambush
Image Source: Daily Excelsior

After the attack, the terrorists fled into the nearby forest. Reinforcements were sent to the area, and a comprehensive search operation was launched to find the attackers. It is believed the terrorists recently infiltrated from across the international border and were heading to higher ground.

Details of the Terrorist Ambush on the Army Vehicle

The ambushed vehicle was on a routine patrol on the Machhedi-Kindli-Malhar Road. Reports state that the terrorists used grenades in the attack, which caused the vehicle to catch fire, amplifying the tragedy. The soldiers were from the Rashtriya Rifles unit, which is engaged in counterterrorism operations in the region.

In another incident on the same day in the Poonch area of Jammu and Kashmir’s Rajouri sector, five soldiers lost their lives and one was seriously injured when terrorists attacked a military vehicle around 3 PM near the Bhimber Gali area. The vehicle caught fire, likely due to the use of grenades by the terrorists.

“Anguished by the tragedy in Poonch District (J&K), where the Indian Army has lost its brave soldiers after a truck caught fire. In this tragic hour, my thoughts are with the bereaved families,” Defence Minister Rajnath Singh informed, expressing his condolences.

High-Level Review of Security Post Terrorist Ambush

Last week, Union Home Minister Amit Shah and National Security Adviser Ajit Doval reviewed the security situation in Jammu and Kashmir. The meeting was attended by Jammu and Kashmir Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha, Director General of Police Dilbag Singh, and other senior officials, underscoring the ongoing efforts to address the security challenges in the Union territory.

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