Violating the ceasefire yet again, Pakistani troops targeted at least 25 Border Security Force (BSF) posts in Jammu and Kashmir last night, forcing the Indian side to retaliate. The firing reportedly began around 10 pm
Pakistani rangers resorted to unprovoked firing and shelling in Arnia, RS Pura and Akhnoor sectors. In retaliation, the BSF has bombarded many forward posts of Pakistan.
The intense firing comes a day after two civilians – and eight-year-old and his father – were killed as Pakistani troops targeted 22 BSF posts and several villages along the International Border. Five others were injured.
Condemning the Friday night incident, Defence Minister Arun Jaitley said yesterday that the Indian Army would respond to the ceasefire violations. “Our army is prepared to respond to each violation. The country has full faith that they (army) are effectively protecting both the territory and the national interest,” he said.
In the past two weeks, incidents of ceasefire violation have been reported almost every day – over 70 since the Narendra Modi government took charge in May.
Border hostilities have directly impacted the peace process. India this week suspended talks with Pakistan over its envoy’s meetings with Kashmiri separatists and the spike in ceasefire violations.
The spurt in firing from Pakistan forces villagers near the border to remain holed up in their houses. Many opt to take shelter in abandoned bunkers which haven’t been used for nearly 10 years.