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Reluctant to fight Taliban, Pak planned attacks on LoC

Zulfikar Majid, Charunda, Uri (Kashmir), April 24, 2013, DHNS: 1:42 IST

Diverted action

Reluctant to fight Taliban militants on the country’s Western borders, Pakistan Army may have planned attacks inside the Indian territory across the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir late last year to create a war like situation on the border with India, according to reports.

Army source told Deccan Herald that Pakistani troops started firing at Indian positions from early October last year in this remote village on the LoC in North Kashmir’s Baramulla district to create a war like situation ‘so that they didn’t have to deploy more troops on their Western borders with Afghanistan under US pressure.’

“We have come to know from our sources that Pakistan Army battalion posted on the other side of Charunda had been transferred to Federally Administrated Tribal Areas (FATA) in North Western Frontier Province (NWFP) to fight against the Taliban militants. As they (Pak Army) were reluctant to go to FATA, they started firing on Indian posts in Charunda so that war like situation prevails on the LoC and they had an excuse not to shift from the LoC,” a senior Army officer posted on LoC revealed.

He said the attacks were part of a larger plan to evade the US pressure and were later repeated in other parts of the LoC.

Justifying his claims, he said, “Pakistan accused Indian Army of crossing the LoC in Charunda and killing a Pakistani trooper which isn’t true. Pakistan trooper might have died in our retaliatory firing. They (Pak Army) had already planned to attack Indian positions in Nowshera sector of Poonch district in Jammu where two Indian soldiers were beheaded.”

“How it is possible that Pakistan Army beheaded two Indian troopers just two days after firing in Chaurnda village. Such operations need a lot of planning and time to execute. They (Pak Army) had already planned to carry out attacks in Poonch sector to create war like situation,” he claimed.

The beheading of two Indian troopers, Lance Naiks, Hemraj and Sudhakar Singh by Border Action Team (BAT) of Pakistan Army when they came about 100 metres into Indian territory and assaulted the patrol party, created war like situation on the LoC for weeks in January.

Both soldiers were decapitated and one head carried across the border. It was the most serious violation of the 2003 ceasefire agreement signed by the then Indian Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and the then Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf. Both sides had agreed to end the frequent artillery and machine gun duels along the 740 km LoC.

India blames the Pakistan army for the attacks, and lists 120 ceasefire violations in 2012 - the highest since the 2003 agreement.

Defence sources revealed that skirmishes on the LoC and the International Border are in the interest of Pakistani establishment as they wanted to divert attention of people from the country’s internal crisis. “Pakistan army and civilian administration are not in sync with each other. Pakistan makes excuses to fire on Indian positions on the LoC from time to time,” they said.

“In October last year the Indian Army was renovating the bunkers and forward posts in Charunda on LoC which is a routine affair before the onset of winter to make them snow resistant. Pakistan Army made it an excuse and started firing and didn’t even spare civilians of Chaurnda village,” they added.

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