Ceasefire violations by Pak witnesses sharp rise; 633 instances in Jan-Feb
Union minister of state for home Hansraj Gangaram Ahir, in written reply to a question in the Lok Sabha on Tuesday, stated that 12 civilians, 6 Army personnel and 4 BSF personnel were killed until February this year on account of ceasefire violations and cross-border firing. In 2017, 12 civilians, 15 Army personnel and 4 BSF personnel were killed in similar circumstances.
While 432 instances of cross-border firing/ceasefire violations were reported till February on LoC manned by the Army, international border under operational control of BSF witnessed 201 such incidents.
“It has been made clear to Pakistan that government seeks to have normal neighbourly relations with Pakistan and is committed to addressing all outstanding issues bilaterally and peacefully,” Ahir said adding that any meaningful dialogue could however be held “only in an atmosphere free of terror, hostility and violence”.
“Onus is on Pakistan to create such a conducive atmosphere. India will continue to take firm and decisive steps to respond to cross-border terrorism,” said the MoS.
Stating that India had through established channels of communication such as DGMOs, meetings of border guarding forces as well as diplomatic channels, lodged strong protests against continued support to cross-border terrorism against India by Pakistan, including by providing cover fire in support of cross-border infiltration of terrorists, Ahir said Islamabad had been asked to abide by its commitment not to allow anti-India activities on its soil, to respect sanctity of the international boundary and LoC and adhere to the 2003 ceasefire pact.
In reply to another question, Ahir informed the House that 16 cross-border infiltration attempts were reported in January 2018, of which 5 ended in success while 4 intruders were killed. In 2017, there were 406 infiltration attempts, highest in the past three years, of which 123 were successful while others led to the killing of 59 terrorists.
The data on terror-related violence in J&K shared by Ahir put the terrorist incidents in the Valley until March 4 at 60, in which 17 terrorists, 15 security personnel and 2 civilians were killed. In 2017, in 39 incidents reported over the corresponding period, 26 terrorists, 10 security force personnel and 4 civilians were killed.