As many as three Pakistani soldiers were killed in an exchange of fire with Indian troops near the Line of Control (LoC) on Wednesday, Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) said.

“Captain Taimoor Ali Khan, Havildar Mushtaq Hussain and Lance Naik Ghulam Hussain embraced martyrdom while responding to unprovoked Indian firing,” said the statement.

The statement added that at least seven Indian soldiers were confirmed dead in retaliatory fire, adding that the exchange of fire between Pakistani and Indian troops is ongoing.

In wake of cross-border shelling, Pakistan summoned Indian Deputy High Commissioner J P Singh to lodge protest over ceasefire violations by India along the Line of Control.

Earlier today, Indian troops targeted a passenger bus near the LoC, killing nine people and injuring 11 others in Lawat.

India had claimed on Tuesday three of its soldiers were killed along the LoC and threatened Pakistani forces of retribution. The army also claimed that one of the bodies had been ‘mutilated’.

Islamabad rejected the Indian allegations and termed them a fabrication and a blatant attempt to malign Pakistan.

Relations between Pakistan and India have been strained for several months, while cross-frontier shelling has intensified leading to deaths of civilians and soldiers stationed along the disputed frontier.