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Kathua Terror Attack: Grenade Thrown, Crossfire Ensues, Large Terrorist Group Involved

Monday’s terror attack on an Army convoy in Kathua district of Jammu and Kashmir resulted in the tragic deaths of five soldiers and injuries to five others. The attack occurred around 3:10 pm while the convoy was crossing a bridge over a nullah in the remote village of Badnota. According to sources, a large group of militants, who had infiltrated the area approximately two months earlier, carried out the assault.

Described as a highly “emboldened terrorist action” by a defence source, the incident took place at the inter-formation boundary between the Northern and Western Command. The soldiers targeted were among additional troops deployed to the area in recent weeks. The militants initiated the attack by hurling a grenade at one of the vehicles and then opened fire from two directions. The Army personnel returned fire, forcing the militants to retreat into the nearby forest. The exchange of gunfire continued into late Monday night, with reinforcements dispatched to the site. Para (Special Forces) personnel were expected to join the operation on Tuesday.

Kathua, bordering the International Border with Pakistan and adjacent to Punjab, Himachal Pradesh, Udhampur, Doda, and Samba districts, has been a strategic location. Badnota village, located nearly 150 kilometers from Kathua town, lies between Machedi and Lohai Malhar, where security forces have maintained a presence due to past militancy. With reports of militant activity from neighboring districts, troops were moving towards the higher reaches of Lohai Malhar and the adjoining Basantgarh area of Udhampur district.

While the Army and J&K Police had not yet commented, Union Minister of State Dr. Jitendra Singh expressed his condolences and reassured the public on social media, urging them not to panic and emphasizing faith in the armed forces. This incident followed a recent encounter in Kathua last month, where security forces killed two militants and a CRPF jawan was martyred.

Additionally, a joint naka attack by militants earlier in June resulted in injuries to several soldiers and the eventual neutralization of the perpetrators. These events underscore the ongoing security challenges in the region.

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Author:- Apoorva Arora

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