Nine Killed In Indian Police Station Siege | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Nine Killed In Indian Police Station Siege

Posted: Jul 28, 2015 at 7:15 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

Indian police overcame a group of gunmen dressed in military fatigues on Monday after a 12-hour battle that ended in a small-town police station near the border with Pakistan, and at least nine people were killed.

Police in the frontier state of Punjab killed three unidentified assailants who had pulled up at the police complex in a stolen car with automatic weapons blazing.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his top ministers have not made detailed statements on the attack, which came weeks after he met Pakistan’s premier Nawaz Sharif in an attempt to revive stalled relations between the nuclear-armed rivals.

Pakistan issued a statement condemning the assault and extending condolences to the government and people of India, pushing back against suggestions by some Indian security sources that the assailants had crossed from Pakistani territory.

In the first such attack in Indian Punjab in more than a decade, the gunmen shot dead a barber and tried to hijack a bus before rushing the police station, witnesses said.

Shoe shop owner Amit Sharma, 43, was woken by the sound of gunfire at dawn.

“I thought someone was setting off firecrackers,” Sharma told Reuters. Instead, he saw three men with assault rifles “spraying bullets everywhere.”

Throughout the day, regular bouts of small arms fire echoed across the town of Dinanagar and the surrounding paddy fields, some 15 km (10 miles) from the international border, witnesses said.

Regional police chief Sumedh Singh Saini told reporters at the scene it was “too early to say” where the gunmen had come from.

They were equipped with automatic weapons, ammunition, and grenades. Two GPS satellite location devices found on the men would be examined for clues, he said.

Three policemen and three civilians were also killed, according to the home ministry.

Police sources said the attackers entered from Pakistan two days ago a short distance to the north in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, where separatist guerrillas are seeking independence from India.

India’s National Security Adviser, Ajit Doval, called it “a very serious terrorist attack,” according to the Times of India.