August 2017 News

Check Terror Activities Along LoC, India Tells Pak

9 August 2017
Times of India
Sachin Parashar

New Delhi: Even as Pakistan accuses India of carrying out ceasefire violations, the government has conveyed to Islamabad that there has been a spurt in terrorist activities along the LoC and in infiltration attempts. A ceasefire violation by Pakistan had on Tuesday led to the killing of an Indian soldier in the Poonch district of Jammu & Kashmir. Pakistan, however, summoned India's deputy high commissioner J P Singh and condemned 'unprovoked ceasefire violations' by Indian forces which, it said, had targeted Pakistani civilians. The senior Indian diplomat though is learnt to have told the Pakistan foreign office that Pakistani forces had first violated ceasefire after which Indian troops responded with appropriate action. The Indian side also conveyed to Pakistan that it had noticed an increase in infiltration bids and that Pakistani forces were providing cover fire to terrorists in Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir (PoK) seeking to cross the LoC. India has diplomatically also conveyed to Pakistan that Indian forces are noticing an increase in terrorist movement and activities along the LoC. Pakistan accused India of deliberate targeting of civilians describing the alleged Indian action as 'deplorable and contrary to human dignity' and international human rights. Both India and Pakistan have accused each other of targeting civilians. Official sources said that Pakistan has targeted Indian villagers across several sectors along the LoC this year. According to Indian officials, ceasefire violations by Pakistan have gone up considerably in 2017. While 228 such violations by Pakistan were reported in 2016, there had been 285 violations by Pakistan until July 31 this year. With the new Pakistan foreign minister Khawaja Muhammad Asif seeking to keep the Kashmir issue in the spotlight, it is unlikely that ceasefire violations will go down significantly in the next few months. Recommended By Colombia According to diplomatic sources, hopes of a breakthrough in bilateral ties have fast dissipated after the ouster of Nawaz Sharif. 'Pakistan has to face elections next year and no government will now want to be seen as bending over backwards for dialogue with India,' said a Pakistan source based in Islamabad. Pakistan diplomats continue to maintain that by not responding to Sharif's offer to start the Comprehensive Bilateral Dialogue (CBD), India let go of a great opportunity to bring about a turnaround in relations which were rocked by the attack on an Indian Army camp last year at Uri. The CBD was announced by foreign minister Sushma Swaraj when she travelled to Islamabad in December 2015 but it could never take off because of the terror strike on Pathankot airbase weeks later.