October 2017 News

India Says Terror Unacceptable, Will Retaliate Forcefully To Intrusion Bids

30 October 2017
The Daily Excelsior
Sanjeev Pargal

Jammu: Under pressure from the United States and other International community, Pakistan today initiated talks with its Director General of Military Operation (DGMO) Maj Gen Sahir Shamshad Mirza speaking to Indian DGMO Lt Gen AK Bhatt this afternoon seeking peace on the borders while as India maintaining that Pakistan was brazenly aiding and abetting infiltration attempts by the militants and targeting civilians directly during ceasefire violations on the Line of Control (LoC). Sources told the Excelsior that Pakistan DGMO, in a sudden and unscheduled move, sought talks with the Indian DGMO over hotline this afternoon to which India agreed. 'Request for the talks was made by Pakistan. It was an unusual and unscheduled move. However, India agreed for the talks after which both the DGMOs spoke for nearly 20 minutes in which the situation along Indo-Pak borders, mainly the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir, largely figured,' sources said, adding that Pakistan, which has suffered heavy losses in retaliatory shelling and firing by the Indian side, called for peace on the LoC and urged India to exercise restraint. Sources said the Indian side again did some plain speaking with Pakistani DGMO and made it very clear to him that Pakistan army's support to terrorists is 'totally unacceptable' and India will continue to take all retaliatory measures to respond to such acts including support rendered from across the LoC to infiltration attempts by the militants. As the Pakistani DGMO accused the Indian security forces of resorting to unprovoked firing along the LoC in Jammu and Kashmir, the Indian side made it clear that Indian troops never open first fire but only retaliated to the Pakistani shelling and firing to save civilians living close to the LoC, who are mostly targeted by Pakistan. 'Indian Army will continue to take all retaliatory measures and retain the right to punitively respond to provocative acts of aggression from Pakistan side especially the support given by Pakistani troops to infiltration bids by the terrorists and ceasefire violations aimed at targeting civilian population,' sources quoted the DGMO as having bluntly told his Pakistani counterpart. Lt Gen Bhatt made it clear to his Pakistani counterpart that support rendered to terrorism by the Pakistan army is 'completely unacceptable' and that Pakistan will have to give up such acts if it was sincere in restoration of peace on the borders. The Indian DGMO said retaliatory firing by Indian troops has only been carried out in response to 'unabated support' provided by the Pakistan army to armed terrorists, who infiltrate across the border and target Indian Army posts with heavy caliber weapons, a statement issued by the Army after DGMO level talks, said. Lt Gen Bhatt told Maj Gen Sahir Shamshad Mirza that while the Indian Army will continue its efforts to ensure peace and tranquility on the borders, the support provided to the terrorists by the Pakistan army was the prime reason for any 'collateral damage'. It said Lt Gen Bhatt also clarified that the Indian Army always maintains impeccable standards of professionalism and does not target civilians. 'On the contrary, Pakistan army has employed civilians at the forward posts and accorded permission for permanent locations of civilians in the vicinity of Pakistan army posts,' the Army said. It said that these civilians have repeatedly been used for gaining information of locations of Indian troops and providing guides to the terrorists while crossing the LoC. Sources said Pakistan was forced to open the channel of DGMO level talks due to a variety of reasons including massive losses suffered by Pakistani troops, both in terms of casualties and infrastructure, in retaliatory firing by the Indian side during past few months of heavy shelling on the LoC. 'Another major reason for Pakistan army's sudden offer of talks was said to be the threats issued by the United States to Pakistan that it would have to curb terrorism or the US would be forced to act,' sources pointed out. During past few days, there have been virtual lull prevailing along LoC in twin border districts of Poonch and Rajouri, which have bore brunt of Pakistani shelling, with no major incident reported from any Sector. During past few months, number of civilians and security personnel have been martyred or injured while houses and other structures have also suffered massive damages. In retaliatory firing by India, Pakistan has lost large number of their army personnel apart from suffering heavy damages of infrastructure. Most of the times, Pakistan had directly targeted civilian areas on the LoC during mortar shelling and firing.