J&K sees most ceasefire violations by Pak in 17 years

J&K: 2020 records highest ceasefire violations by Pakistan in 17 years

India shares a 3,323-km-long border with Pakistan, of which 221 km of the IB and 740 km of the LoC fall in Jammu and Kashmir

Border Security Force (BSF) patrol near the international border at Hiranagar sector in Jammu. Credit: PTI

Pakistani troops made the highest number of ceasefire violations along the border in Jammu and Kashmir in 2019 in the last 17 years, amounting to over 4,000 instances or an average of over 11 violations daily.

Last year 3,233 ceasefire violations were reported along the International Border (IB) and Line of Control (LoC) in the union territory. This number was 2,936 in 2018 and 971 in 2017, reflecting a massive surge in tensions along the borders, official data reveals.

Only 405 ceasefire violations were reported in 2015, while the number was 583 in 2014. The Indian government, led by the then Prime Minister late Atal Bihari Vajpayee, had entered into a border ceasefire agreement with Pakistan in 2003, before which almost 5,800 ceasefire violations were reported in 2002. Following the agreement, however, no ceasefire was reported for the next three years.

In 2007, Pakistan violated the bilateral agreement and 21 ceasefire violations were reported followed by 77 in 2008. There was a gradual increase in violations by Pakistan between 2009 and 2013. The corresponding figures for 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010 and 2009 were 347, 114, 62, 44, and 28 respectively.

According to a senior army official, shelling and firing by Pakistani troops in the last few years has been so heavy that it has virtually made the 2003 truce redundant. India shares a 3,323-km-long border with Pakistan, of which 221 km of the IB and 740 km of the LoC fall in Jammu and Kashmir.

“Besides helping infiltration, Pakistani troops repeatedly target forward posts and villages along the LoC and the IB to create a fear psychosis among the border residents. The frequent shelling and firing incidents this year forced thousands of border residents to migrate to safer places,” he said.

To protect the border residents from the increasing ceasefire violations, the Centre sanctioned Rs 415 crore for the construction of over 14,400 underground bunkers along the LoC and the IB in J&K. But the border residents say, the construction work is moving at a snail’s pace.