Nine troops of the Indian Border Security Force (BSF) were injured, including two who were critical, on Tuesday morning at a firing range located near the Indo-Pakistani border in Rajasthan. The incident occurred when a mortar accidentally exploded during a training exercise.
New Delhi (Sputnik) — This is the third incident of troop injury during mortar firing. According to a BSF official, two personnel are critical and have been airlifted to Jodhpur while others have been taken to a nearby hospital.
In March this year, four BSF personnel were injured in a similar manner when the 51mm mortar fell short of its target. In this incident, a senior-level inspector and head constable suffered serious injuries due to the explosion of ammunition. Few days after this incident, six BSF personnel were injured at another firing range in eastern part of India due to mortar shell blast when a 51mm mortar fell short of its desired target and injured the men.
Indian ordnance factories produce 51mm British pattern mortar ammunition which has a range of approximately 850 meters. The 51mm mortar is one of the most used weapons during tense situations at the border with Pakistan. Light and small, the 51mm mortar can be easily carried by one soldier. The Indian Army, however, prefers the enhanced range mortar to curb casualty of troops in enemy firing. Its 60 mm mortar has range of up to two km.
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