10,000 Locals Evacuated Along IB In Kashmir Amidst Increased Ceasefire Violations

| January 21 , 2018 , 08:36 IST

In view of the increased ceasefire violations from Pakistan along the International Border (IB) in Poonch and Rajouri districts of Jammu and Kashmir, around 10,000 people living near the IB have been shifted to relatively safer areas. The state government has also ordered that schools within 5 km of the IB and the Line of Control (LoC) be closed.

On Saturday, 3 people, including an Army jawan, were killed and 9 others injured when Pakistan resorted to unprovoked firing along the IB and LoC in Jammu. Since January 3, at least 12 people, including 6 civilians have been killed in ceasefire violations by Pakistan.

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Previously, on January 8, the government had announced the sanctioning of construction of 14,460 individual and community bunkers at a cost of Rs 415.73 crore for border residents. While 7298 bunkers would be constructed along the LoC in the districts of Poonch and Rajouri, 7162 underground bunkers would be constructed along the IB in Jammu, Kathua and Samba districts.

The year 2017 marked a sharp increase in the number of ceasefire violations by Pakistan along the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir, with 860 such incidents taking place, as compared to 221 in the previous year.

A total of 138 Pakistan Army personnel were killed, and 155 injured by the Indian Army in 2017 in tactical operations and retaliatory cross-border firings along the LoC, government intelligence sources said. Meanwhile, the Indian Army lost 28 soldiers with 70 others being injured along the LoC during the same period of time.