Four army personnel were killed in a shooting incident early Wednesday at a military station in the Indian border state of Punjab, officials said, adding that the shooters were being sought.
An unknown number of shooters were at large at the Bathinda military station and had ammunition on them, according to a defense source who declined to be identified due to the sensitivity of the situation.
According to S.P.S. Parmar, a senior police official in Punjab, the incident was “not a terror attack” and occurred in a canteen.
“Station quick-response teams have been activated.” “The area was cordoned off and sealed,” said the army in a statement. “Search operations are underway. More information is being gathered.”
The incident occurred at 4:35 a.m. (2305 GMT Tuesday), according to the statement.
The military station, located about 280 kilometers (175 miles) northwest of New Delhi, houses mostly soldier families and serves as a residential army base.
Gulneet Singh Khurana, Bathinda’s top police official, told local news broadcaster NDTV that a police team was waiting outside the military station and that the army had not yet cleared their entry.
He also stated that the military station’s four gates had been closed.
Meanwhile, ANI quoted police sources as saying that an Insas rifle with 28 cartridges went missing about two days ago and that army personnel was suspected of being involved.
Recent attacks on Indian military personnel
The following are major attacks on Indian military bases in recent years:
Militants attacked an Indian army post in Rajouri, in the disputed Kashmir region, killing three soldiers and injuring two others in a shootout.
In the deadliest attack on security forces in the disputed region in decades, a suicide bomber rammed a car into a bus carrying Indian paramilitary police, killing 44 of them.
Militants attacked an army base near Jammu in November 2016, killing seven security personnel and taking hostages inside.
In September 2016, four gunmen stormed a brigade headquarters in the disputed Himalayan region of Uri, killing 18 Indian soldiers.
In January 2016, Indian security forces killed six militants who attacked a military air base in Pathankot, Punjab, killing seven security personnel and injuring 22 others.