Villages near LOC tensed over extensive ‘shelling’ and ‘ceasefire’ violation

Despite the growing tensions on border between India and Pakistan. The administration has not directed the locals to evacuate their houses and villages. However, the people were seen vacating on their own, as said by the locals along the LOC in the J&K Valley.

The border between India and Pakistan has been under tensed situation since the Pulwama terror attack on February 14 killing 40 CRPF personnel. Since then, Pakistan has violated the ceasefire several times.

As said by Major General Surendra Singh Mahal in the Joint Press meet by AIR, NAVY and ARMY yesterday, Pakistan violated ‘ceasefire’ around 35 times in the last few days.

The first ceasefire violation in the Nowshera sector happened around 6.30 pm on Monday, when Pakistani forces opened fire, officials said.

The Pakistani Army shelled forward posts in Nowshera sector using small arms, but were repelled, PTI reported, citing unidentified police officers.

The Pakistan Army had also used heavy mortar shelling on forward posts along the Line of Control on Monday night, the official said.

An unidentified Army officer said Pakistan Army used heavy weaponry and fired 120 mm mortar targetting villages and forward posts, PTI reported. Pakistan Army reported fired using small arms, automatic and heavy weaponry at Krishna Gati, Balakote, Khari Karmara, Mankote and Tarkundi in Poonch district, Kalal, Baba Khori, Kalsian, Laam and Jhangar areas in Rajouri and Pallanwala and Laleali in Jammu district.

According to the locals living along the border, the shelling on Tuesday evening was more intense than usual. It followed the airstrikes conducted by the Indian Air Force on a Jaish-e-Mohammed base in Pakistan on Tuesday morning.

At least five Indian jawans were injured in heavy shelling in Akhnoor Sector, PTI reported.

On Wednesday, Pakistan intruded the Indian airspace and crossed the Line of Control, which the Military Officials said were meant to target military installations in the Jammu and Kashmir Valley.

While the relations between India and Pakistan remain tensed, the residents living along the Line of Control have been in a constant state of terror.

Fear has gripped the border areas, despite these people seeing cross-border firing daily. In 2018, over 1,432 incidents of ceasefire violations took place. Over 60 people, including security personnel, were killed.

The locals have been advised to stay indoors and schools have been ordered to remain closed.

“The authorities asked us to remain indoors. But we are not going to be safe even inside our own homes in case things worsen,” said Nasir Khan.

These people cite it is as ‘war-like’ situation.

“Every time the ties between two countries become tense, it is a war-like situation for us and we have to run for our safety. They should decide once for all,” said Tajwinder Singh of Lam village.

However, the administration is saying that adequate measures are being taken to ensure the safety of people by the LOC.

“As of now we have ordered the schools to be closed and asked the people to remain indoors. In case the need arises we will evacuate the people,” Rahul Yadav, divisional commissioner of Poonch.

On Thursday, Pakistan fired four times along the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir’s Poonch and Rajouri districts as it violated the ceasefire agreement for the seventh consecutive day with India.

The firing by shelling with mortars and firing of small arms along LoC started at 6am and the latest came at 4pm, Defence spokesperson Lt Col Devender Anand said, as tension between the neighbouring countries escalated to the worst in years.

A soldier, Zakir Hussain, of the 3rd Jammu and Kashmir Light Infantry, who had come home on leave, was injured around 3.15pm on Thursday at Balnoi Sagra of Mankote sector in Poonch. The 35-year-old was cutting wood near his house when the shell exploded near his house. He is being evacuated to a hospital

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