Army chief to visit martyr Hemraj's family

Last Updated: Mon, Jan 14, 2013 09:10 hrs

Chief of Army Staff, General Bikram Singh, will meet the family of Lance Naik Hemraj Singh, who was killed by Pakistani troops near the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir's Poonch district on January 8.

"I will go. They are my people. Tomorrow is Army Day, I will send my senior officer there. I will definitely go. Let this event, the Army Day, be over, I will definitely go and meet the family. If that is the demand, I shall be there, General Singh told media here.

Hemraj's family, which entered its fifth day of hunger strike today in Mathura's Shernagar village, had earlier in the day demanded that it would call off its fast if Army Chief visits the family members of the martyr and assure them that his severed head will be brought back.

Asserting that Pakistan had pre-planned the whole operation, General Singh said that the beheading and the mutilation of the bodies of two Indian jawans along the LoC was against all rules of engagement, gruesome and unpardonable.

Conveying his condolences to the families of the two Indian jawans, General Singh said Pakistani action is against the ethics and principle of soldiering.

On bringing back the head of Lance Naik Hemraj, General Singh said that the matter is being pursued through the diplomatic channel, adding that the matter has been conveyed at Director General of Military Operation (DGMO) level.

Lance Naik Hemraj and Lance Naik Sudhakar Singh were killed by infiltrating Pakistani soldiers in Poonch sector of Jammu and Kashmir on January 8.

Their bodies were found mutilated, sparking a diplomatic face-off between India and Pakistan and tension along the Line of Control that separates the two countries.

Pakistan has denied India's claim that its troops crossed the Line of Control to ambush a patrol party in the Mendhar sector in Poonch district. (ANI)

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