Press Trust of india

 ‘Ceasefire violations along LoC witness 69% increase’

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Jammu: As many as 2027 ceasefire violations by Pakistan have taken place along the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir till June 10 this year, an increase of almost 69 percent as compared to the same period in 2019, officials said.

The increased violations are being viewed by senior security officials as an attempt by Pakistan to provide fire cover to militants sneaking from across the border to keep the pot boiling.

The year 2019 witnessed a total of 3,168 ceasefire violations against 1,629 in 2018.

“A total of 2027 ceasefire violations took place this year till June 10, with the highest number of 411 violations taking place in March,” a senior official said, quoting the latest data compiled by the Army.

He said January recorded 367 ceasefire violations, February (366), April (387) and May (382), while the first 10 days of June saw 114 incidents of firing and shelling from Pakistan.

Against this, 926 ceasefire violations took place in the same period in 2019 with the highest 267 reported in March followed by 234 in April, 221 in May, 215 in February, 203 in January and 60 till June 10 last year, the official said.

Since the revoking of special status to Jammu and Kashmir under Article 370 and the bifurcation of the erstwhile state into two union territories in August last year, “Pakistan has been violating the ceasefire on an average of 11 times daily,” the official said.

Director General of Police Dilbag Singh had recently said that a few groups of militants have managed to sneak into Jammu and Kashmir in the recent past under the cover of Pakistani firing but said a large number of infiltration attempts were eliminated by troops guarding the LoC and the International border.

“This time they did not even wait for the snow to melt as the first group of terrorists was launched in March itself…As per the assessment of reports, 150 to 250 terrorists were present in training camps across the LoC in Kashmir, while 125 to 150 terrorists were present across the IB and LoC in Jammu region (waiting for a chance to infiltrate into this side),” the police chief had said.

Meanwhile, the official said a total of 100 militants, including over a dozen top commanders of various outfits, have been killed so far in separate encounters in the Union Territory this year.

As many as 28 militants were killed in April, while 22 others were killed in the past fortnight, the officials said, adding 18 militants each were killed in January and May and seven each in February and March.

A total of 158 militants were killed in 2019, while the number of militants killed a year earlier was 254, the officials said, adding 213 others were killed in 2017.

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