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OpinionsIndia must put an end to the beheading of its soldiers by...

India must put an end to the beheading of its soldiers by Pakistan


must put an end to the beheading of its soldiers by Pakistan

BN Sharma

Our jawans' martyrdom must not be used to let off any individual who has not visualized the impending threat in tasking the party to operate unsupported.

Three Indian Army soldiers belonging to 57 Rashtriya Rifles laid down their lives while operating in the infamous Machil Sector in and on November 22, and it was most disturbing that one of the jawans was beheaded.

Usually, such acts are done at night but this was carried out in broad daylight. It is really painful and lowers the pride of the troops as well as that of common citizens.

Such barbaric acts are signs of an uncivilised enemy and it hardly makes a difference if Pakistan regulars are involved directly or extend support to militants in carrying the act. With our engagement for three decades, such acts have been on for years.

Does this imply that we are presenting the enemy with an opportunity to mutilate our soldiers' bodies? The situation on ground dictates the outcome of all tactical engagements.

The commanders and troops are trained to deal with the situation with leadership skills, drills and procedure. Knowledge of the enemy's habits, strength and weaknesses gives us an additional advantage to work out the best possible plan.

It is not difficult to visualise that mutilation is only possible when any small-sized party is wiped off and no resistance or immediate help is likely to arrive. It is to display superiority, hatred and spread fear.

In the instant, the emerging reports indicate that a party of three operating ahead of fence towards the LoC was ambushed.

It could be a matter of debate if this strength was strong enough to operate in an area separated by a formidable fence.

Usually, troops on ground are served well by the set of SOP for different activities prepared by senior and experienced staff officers to guide on size.

Whenever such SOPs are violated, it has resulted in failure or loss. I hope no such lapse emerges here on this account. It can also be seen that, at times, the fence may become disadvantageous as it may hamper the move of reinforcements owing to available gaps or gates, which could be at a distance of about 500m or 1km.

Three soldiers have laid down their lives and attained martyrdom in the call of duty; the nation pays homage to them and stands with their families. Their sacrifice and martyrdom must not be used to let off any individual who has apparently not visualised or anticipated the impending threat in tasking the party to operate ahead unsupported, without adequate capabilities, resulting in its decimation.

Such incidents must point out possible lapses and shortfalls, and corrective measures must not be hushed.

We must not cry over what the enemy has done, and instead be concerned as to how this was done – and not extend them an easy opportunity to carry such acts on our soldiers.


Served for 38 years in BSF, experience of eastern and western borders. Follows security developments and issues.

The Northlines is an independent source on the Web for news, facts and figures relating to Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh and its neighbourhood.

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