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Pakistan violates ceasefire during Shinde visit

By:  Tupaki Desk   |   22 Oct 2013 11:42 AM GMT
Pakistan opened fire on Indian posts in Jammu and Kashmir's Poonch district Tuesday, a day when Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde was visiting the international border in the region.

Defence spokesman Col. R.K. Palta told IANS: "Pakistan Army has violated the ceasefire in Hamirpur area of Bhimber Gali today (Tuesday) morning.

"They have used mortars, automatics and small arms to target our positions. Our troops have effectively retaliated Pakistan firing using equal calibre weapons," the spokesman said.

"The firing started 10.35 a.m. today (Tuesday) and firing exchanges continued in the area till 11.15 a.m," he added.

The ceasefire violation came barely hours after an earlier firing exchange when Pakistani troops indulged in heavy shelling of Indian positions in R.S. Pura sector of the international border in Jammu district late Monday night.

A senior para military Border Security Force (BSF) officer said Pakistani troops used 82 mm mortars and other heavy weaponry to target positions in Nikkowal and Abdullian areas of R.S. Pura sector.

"The firing started at 9.45 p.m. Monday. We have retaliated strongly to Pakistan shelling," the official said.

Since the beginning of this year, Pakistani troops have been frequently violating the bilateral ceasefire which was signed by India and Pakistan in November 2003.

A modicum of normalcy had returned into the lives of thousands of people living close to the Line of Control (LoC) and the international border in Jammu and Kashmir after the ceasefire agreement.

But since the beginning of this year, because of repeated Pakistan ceasefire violations, many families living in border villages have been forced to flee to safer places.