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Soldiers shoot at two civilians in Arunachal Pradesh

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Soldiers of an elite Army unit injured two civilians in the Tirap district of Arunachal Pradesh after mistaking them for extremists.

The incident at Chasa village on Friday night was reminiscent of a botched ambush by the Army’s 21 Paras that led to the death of 14 civilians in Nagaland’s Mon district on December 4 and 5, 2021.

Locals said the two persons — Nokphua Wangpan and Ramwang Wangsu — were returning from a river after fishing when the soldiers fired upon them. The soldiers were later identified as members of the 12 Paras.

Neither the Army nor Tirap district officials were available for comments. But an Army officer, who identified himself as Major James and had supposedly led the commandos, admitted to the mistake in a video that went viral.

The officer, surrounded by angry villagers, could be heard assuring compensation for the families of the victims.

“The persons are being treated even as we speak. They will be airlifted for advanced treatment. We admit to our mistake,” he said.

To placate the locals, he said he and his colleagues would not leave the place till the villagers were satisfied with the arrangements being made.

“If you want, we are ready to give a written statement that we made a mistake. I will also sign on the copy of the FIR. I take full responsibility as the incident happened under my command,” the officer said.

The 12 Para unit is based in Khonsa, headquarters of the Tirap district.

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