SRINAGAR: Pakistan troops violated ceasefire again in Jammu and Kashmir's Poonch district on Friday evoking a strong response from the Indian Army. According to reports, heavy shelling started from the Pakistan side of the border late on Thursday, which continued till Friday morning.
The unprovoked firing from the Pakistani troops evoked a sharp retaliation from the Indian Army. The firing has stopped as of now.
This comes amid reports that ceasefire violations by Pakistan from across the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir is on a five-year high within the first nine months of the current year.
According to the data collated by the Indian Army, Pakistan violated the ceasefire in Jammu and Kashmir 2,225 times till October 2, meaning that on an average, it violated the ceasefire eight times a day during this period.
Compared to this, the total number of ceasefire violations by Pakistan numbered 1,629 during the entire calendar year of 2018.
"Pakistan increased ceasefire violations this year following the Balakot air strikes in February and subsequently after the special status was withdrawn to Jammu and Kashmir in August," a defence official said.
The officer said the high number of ceasefire violations is linked to attempts by Pakistan to push terrorists into Jammu and Kashmir under the covering fire.
Intelligence reports have revealed that terrorists of Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed and Lashkar-e-Taiba have been kept in waiting along the LoC to be pushed into Indian territory, whenever they sense a chance.
Army sources said India has retaliated to each and every ceasefire violation befittingly. There have also been attempts by Pakistan to carry out Border Action Team (BAT) attacks on Indian positions at the LoC. A BAT team generally consists of Pakistani army commandos and terrorists.
In the last week of July, Indian troops had gunned down five BAT attackers near a forward post of the Keran sector in Jammu and Kashmir. Their bodies were not claimed by Pakistani troops.
As per the Army`s data, there have been 123 terrorist-initiated incidents along the LoC and in the hinterland of Jammu and Kashmir till October 2 as compared to 318 such incidents during the entire calendar year of 2018.
The Army has neutralised 140 militants till October 2 this year as compared to 254 in 2018 and 213 in 2017.
(With Agency inputs)