Kupwara, Oct 31 : An eerie silence prevailed along the Line of Control (LoC) as Pakistani mortar guns remained quiet during the last 24 hours in north Kashmir, where a ceasefire violation from the other side has forced scores of residents of frontier villages to flee to safer places.
On Wednesday morning, one civilian was killed at the ceasefire violation at LoC in Machil sector here. People living near borders are reluctant to return to their homes. The residents, evacuated to safer places, are praying for peace and demanding construction of bunkers.
Several villagers said that it was one of the heaviest shelling by Pakistan troops since ceasefire agreed by India and Pakistan in 2003 on LoC and International Border (IB) in Jammu and Kashmir. Official sources said that besides the civilian causality and injuries, several residential houses were also damaged in the shelling.
Two soldiers and a woman was killed in Pakistan ceasefire violation last week, prompting retaliatory action by Indian Army in which according to Army Chief General Bipin Rawat three militant launch pads were damaged.
Ceasefire violation by Pakistani troops at the LOC in Baramulla and Kupwara has witnessed increase during the past few months, particularly after August 5. Official sources said Pakistan troops were firing to give cover to militants to sneak into this side from Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (POK) before the infiltration routes are closed due to snowfall in winter.
A large number of trained militants are waiting at launch pads at LoC to be pushed into this side, they said. However, they said security forces are already on high alert to foil any infiltration bids. Director General of Police (DGP), Dilbagh Singh has recently said that some militants have sneaked into this side from PoK. However, he said, majority infiltration attempts were foiled.(UNI)