J&K: Pak Chopper Intrudes into Indian Airspace in Poonch

Pak chopper intrudes into Indian airspace in Poonch

A Pakistani helicopter, flew inside the Indian territory near the Line of Control (LoC) in Poonch district of Jammu and Kashmir for several minutes on Sunday, following which the army tried to shoot it down.

Sources said a white Pakistani copter came within 250 metres of the LoC in Dalhan area of the district around 12.10 pm. In a video, apparently shot by a witness, the copter is seen flying high near the side of a hill in Poonch.

The sound of constant gunfire can be heard, indicating the Indian Army tried to shoot it down.

Sources said the helicopter flew back to Pakistan-occupied Kashmir moments after it was targeted by the army with small arms fire.

An army spokesperson, while confirming the development, said, “The air violation was noted at 12.10 pm by a Pakistani helicopter in Poonch sector. It was likely to be a civil chopper and was flying very high. The air sentries at forward location had engaged it with small arms.”

In Bengaluru, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said she was not aware of the details pertaining to the Pakistani chopper. “I have only heard about it through the media. I cannot comment until I get complete details,” she said.

According to the bilateral agreement inked in 1991 by India and Pakistan, “rotary wing aircraft” should not come within one kilometre of the LoC and “fixed wing aircraft” should not be within 10 km of it. The 1991 pact ensures there is a buffer zone on both sides of the LoC to prevent accidental escalation of hostilities.

PoK prime minister was on board

The prime minister of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir said his helicopter came under Indian fire while flying close to the LoC, but he escaped unhurt, AFP reports from Muzaffarabad. Raja Farooq Haider was on his way to a nearby village. “My helicopter had not even committed any violation and was flying well within our side of the LoC when Indian troops opened fire,” Haider said.

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