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Pakistan violates ceasefire in Jammu and Kashmir's Hiranagar sector, targets civilian areas

While no casualties were reported in the ceasefire violation, a couple of houses situated near the border were damaged in the firing from across the border. 

Pakistan violates ceasefire in Jammu and Kashmir's Hiranagar sector, targets civilian areas
File Photo

New Delhi: In yet another incident of ceasefire violation, Pakistani rangers resorted to heavy mortar shelling and firing along the Indo-Pak border in Hiranagar sector of Jammu and Kashmir. The Pakistani rangers began firing on Saturday night and continued till 5:30 am today. 

The neighbouring army targeted many civilian areas. While no casualties were reported, a couple of houses situated near the border were damaged in the firing from across the border. 

Meanwhile, the BSF said it retaliated effectively to firing by Pakistani forces.

Pakistan security forces from the past few weeks have been resorting to unprovoked firing and shelling along the Line of Control. They have also been targetting civilian areas along the border.

The ceasefire violations and unprovoked firing have seen a spike ever since the Centre repealed special provisions of Article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir in August this year, as per Army sources. The issue was raised by the Army during the functional level talks held by the Directorate General of Military Operations with its Pakistani counterpart on October 1.

"Due to the firing, our goat shed caught fire and we had to take the help of other locals to rescue the animals. We had to call the fire station also," said a local while speaking to ANI.

According to defence sources, 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violations this year following the Balakot airstrikes in February and subsequently after the special status was withdrawn to Jammu and Kashmir in August," a defence official said.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.

The Army has neutralised 140 militants till October 2 this year as compared to 254 in 2018 and 213 in 2017.