Pakistan violates Indian airspace in J&K’s Rajouri; civilian air traffic suspended in the Valley

A day after India struck terror camp in Balakot, Pakistan Wednesday violated Indian air space in Nowshera sector of Jammu and Kashmir’s Rajouri district and in Poonch, but were pushed back by Indian aircraft, news agency PTI reported. There has been no official confirmation as yet. The jets entered into Indian air space over Nowshera sector this morning,” an official told PTI. They were immediately pushed back by Indian jets on air patrol.

Srinagar, Jammu and Leh airports have been closed civilian air traffic. The civilian air traffic has been suspended temporarily in view of the emergency,” an official of the Airport Authority of India told PTI. While the official did not specify the nature of the emergency, it is believed the step was taken in view of an IAF jet crashing in Budgam district this morning. As per reports, two bodies had been found at the crash site.

However, Pakistan is reportedly claiming it has shot down two Indian aircraft “inside Pakistani airspace” and that the Indian Air Force crossed the Line of Control in response to Pakistan Air Force strikes in the morning. Major General Asif Ghafoor, a spokesperson for Pakistan’s Armed Forces, claimed that one of the aircraft fell in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir and that the other fell in Jammu and Kashmir. One Indian pilot was arrested by troops on the ground “while two in the area [sic]”, he said.

Since Tuesday evening, Pakistani troops had also resorted to firing mortar shells targeting civilian hamlets and forward posts. All government and private schools located within 5 kilometres of the Line of Control (LoC) in the district are closed today. The exams scheduled for today also stand cancelled, District Magistrate, Rajouri told news agency ANI.

In a separate incident, two Jaish terrorists were killed in an encounter in Shopian this morning. Arms and ammunition have been recovered from the site of the encounter, officials were quoted as saying in media reports.