Pak violating ceasefire to aid insurgents: Shinde news
23 October 2013

Pakistan troops continued heavy shelling at Indian positions in the Poonch sector on Tuesday afternoon amidst intelligence reports that suggest the presence of Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) founder Hafiz Saeed in areas along the Line of Control (LoC) to facilitate infiltration into Jammu and Kashmir.

The Pakistani side is reported to have resorted to fresh firing in the Bhimber Gali and Hamirpur sectors in Poonch at around 12.30 pm, forcing Indian Army to retaliate.

Union home minister Sushilkumar Shinde who arrived in the state to review the security situation in Jammu and Kashmir, said, Indian Army personnel have shown maximum restraint despite unprovoked firing.

Shinde told reporters in Samba town on the sidelines of a Border Security Force (BSF) Sainik Sammelan, "It is true that information suggests Hafiz Saeed could be visiting areas of LoC to abet infiltration."

Pakistani troops had targeted Indian positions in RS Pura sector of the LOC in Jammu district late last night.

Pakistan troops had, on Monday, fired 82mm mortars and other heavy weaponry at Indian positions in Nikkowal and Abdullian areas of RS Pura sector late on Monday.

"The firing started at 9.45 pm on Monday. We have retaliated strongly to Pakistan shelling. Firing exchanges continued till early morning Tuesday in these areas," a senior BSF officer said.

High tension has gripped residents of border villages as Pakistan rangers have been frequently violating the bilateral ceasefire signed by the two countries in November 2003.

With Pakistani troops targeting homes of residents during trans-border shelling, many villagers close to the Line of Control (LoC) have already left their homes for safer places.

Home minister Shinde who visited Jammu and Kashmir to assess the security situation in view of repeated ceasefire violations along the LoC, said, "I have surveyed areas along the border today, even those from where infiltration took place recently....There is more infiltration as compared to past times. But, the forces are ready to face any situation."

"We can't be tougher by only saying so. We are taking action to that effect," he added.

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Pak violating ceasefire to aid insurgents: Shinde