Chandigarh: Yet another soldier has died of a gunshot wound at Bathinda military station. The incident happened on Wednesday evening, hours after four jawans were killed in the wee hours at the camp by two persons in “kurta-pyjama.”
The deceased soldier, Laghu Raj Shankar, possibly shot himself with his service weapon in the right temple, while he was on sentry duty at the military station, said police sources. They felt that Shankar’s death was probably a case of accidental firing or suicide, but it was in no way connected with the slayings in the morning.
By an uncanny coincidence, the four jawans were killed at 4.30 am and the sentry died at 4.30 pm. The weapon and the cartridge case were found near him, the police said. Shankar had returned from leave on April 11.
Investigators examining sole witnesses' angle in the incident that killed 4 jawans
Investigators were also critically examining the account of the sole eyewitness, gunner Demai Mohan, who was on duty in the wee hours, and had spotted two masked men in “kurta pyjama” carrying an Insas rifle and an axe, after the firing incident at the crack of dawn.
The two assailants had made good their escape by melting into the forests on the periphery of the army station, the gunner had further claimed. The version of the eyewitness is being questioned as the bodies bore no injury inflicted by a sharp-edged weapon like an axe.
Besides, no one is corroborating the gunner’s statement; in fact, no else had seen the two assailants in civilian clothes moving in the area, it is pointed out.
Moreover, the firing on the jawans as they slept in their barracks appeared to be a targeted killing, though a motive for this is yet to be ascertained, as there would have been indiscriminate firing in the case of a terror attack, sources have contended.