Jammu and Kashmir: Pakistan violates ceasefire in Balakot sector

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New Delhi | Updated: May 17, 2017 8:40:07 AM

Pakistan on Wednesday violated ceasefire in Balakot sector in Jammu and Kashmir.

Pakistan on Wednesday violated ceasefire in Balakot sector in Jammu and Kashmir. (PTI representative image)

Pakistan on Wednesday violated ceasefire in Balakot sector in Jammu and Kashmir, according to ANI report. This comes after the neighbouring country yesterday had resorted to shelling and firing for the fourth consecutive day on forward posts and civilian areas along the LoC in Rajouri district even as nearly 1,700 people have been evacuated from shelling-hit areas.

Pakistani troops continued overnight shelling along the LoC in three belts of Rajouri district. The firing and shelling has affected over 10,000 people, according to PTI report.

On May 13, Pakistani troops had pounded civilian areas and forward posts in Nowshera area with mortars, killing two civilians and injuring three.

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Pakistan has resorted to firing and shelling along LoC and International Border (IB) in Rajouri and Jammu districts for the past one week since May 10, when troops shelling Nowshera and killed a woman and injured two persons including her husband.

“Pakistan army initiated indiscriminate firing of small arms, automatic weapons and 82 mm and 120 mm mortars from 1830 hours along LoC in Nowshera sector,” a defence spokesman said. “The Indian Army posts are retaliating strongly and effectively and firing is presently on,” he was quoted as saying by PTI.

“Shelling (by Pak Army) started in Ans Bhandhaar areas of Nowshera in Rajouri at 2255 hours last night. Lam and Kalsian areas were also affected,” Rajouri Deputy Commissioner Shahid Iqbal Choudhary said. Pakistani troops resorted to fresh ceasefire violation along LoC in Nowshera sector, he said.

Choudhary said four villages in Nowshera have come under small arms fire from across the LoC.

“Interdepartmental teams deputed by District Administration for damage assessment reported small arms firing began at 4 PM yesterday in village Sarya followed by villages Khamba, Anwas and Bhandar,” he added.

The DC confirmed that damage assessment teams were withdrawn at 5.30 PM after intermittent small arms firing by Pakistan.

Nearly 1,700 people have already been evacuated from LoC hamlets hit by shelling from Pakistan and shifted to relief camps, he added.

At least one incident of ceasefire violation by Pakistan took place daily along the LoC in Jammu and Kashmir in 2015 and 2016 in which 23 security personnel lost their lives, the home ministry has said in an RTI reply.

As many as 1,142 terror incidents were reported in the state between 2012 and 2016 in which 236 security personnel and 90 civilians were killed, it said.

According to the reply, Pakistan breached the truce along the Line of Control 449 times in 2016 as compared to 405 violations in 2015.

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