With an aim to safeguard the life and property of civilians in forward villages of Balakote, which were pounded heavily in last one week with mortars, Army has destroyed a large number of live mortar shells lying in the area.
Locals of the area from different villages of Balakote sector of Mendhar in Pir Panchal region approached army informing that a number of live mortar shells, both 82 mm and 120 mm, are lying in their fields as well as near their houses and can explode anytime.
" After shelling one of the major risk are these live shells which can trigger explosions if fiddled with," sources said.
After green signal from higher ups, Army has started two different drives in the area. One is being carried out by the Rashtriya Rifles unit in the area and other one by Ace of Spades Division.
"Special teams in both these drives are destroying live mortar shells in different villages of the Balakote sector," sources said. Locals informed Army about live shells lying in the area after which army sent a team of experts to shift these shells to safer locations where these were destroyed.
They said that a number of shells have so far been destroyed with some of these even located very close to and even in the premises of houses. "The live shells destroyed so far even include 120 mm mortar which is one of the heaviest shell of mortar and can trigger major loss," sources said.
Army has also asked all the locals to inform the nearby camp in case they find any live mortar shell so that same can be exploded.
The drive is going on for the past two days and would continue till these areas are cleared, sources added.