- Maj Gen Mirza says Pakistan Army reserves right to respond Indian aggression
- Five civilians injured in Kotli’s Nakyal sector after unprovoked Indian shelling
The Directors General of Military Operations (DGMOs) of Pakistan and India established hotline contact on Monday a day after four Pakistan Army troops were killed in unprovoked Indian firing along the Line of Control in Azad Jammu Kashmir.
DGMO Major General Sahir Shamshad Mirza communicated Pakistan’s demarche to his Indian counterpart Lt General Anil Kumar Bhatt to protest against the deliberate targeting of the Pakistan Army’s vehicle resulting into the martyrdom of four soldiers, besides injuring one soldier and a civilian passerby.
While emphasising the importance of controlling tactical actions of under command troops, Maj General Sahir Mirza warned that such indiscretions could potentially spiral major standoffs between the two sides. “Such acts have the potential to escalate which then will be extremely detrimental to peace and stability,” he maintained.
He also made it clear that while the Pakistan Army had been exercising restraint, recurrence of any such incident in future could leave it with no choice but to respond with further strong and effective steps. “We don’t want to go down the path where we start choking each other’s supply lines; however, any such recurrence will invoke more strong and effective measures from Pakistan’s side,” he told his Indian counterpart.
Indian media quoted Lt General Anil Bhatt as making it clear to his Pakistani counterpart that the Indian Army was ‘sincere’ in maintaining in its effort of maintaining peace and tranquility along the Line of Control. The Indian media also confirmed that Maj General Mirza raised the issue of the targeting of a Pakistan Army vehicle in Neelum valley.
On Sunday, the Indian troops targeted the army vehicle moving along the Neelum River at Athmuqam area of the Neelum Valley. According to the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), the targeted vehicle fell into the river. Resultantly, four soldiers riding the vehicle drowned.
The vehicle, which was attacked by Indian forces on Sunday, pulled from the river on Monday. During the operation, the army divers pulled out the vehicle while search operation for dead bodies was underway. A temporary ban has been imposed on new tourists on Neelum valley anyhow those already present there may continue their activities.
The recent firing incident by Indian troops has made the atmosphere as looming as guest houses become vacant after the firing incident. Deputy Commissioner Chaudhry Muhammad Farid and Superintendent of Police Jammel Ahmed Jamil said that law and order situation was under control in the Neelum district.
They said that entry of the tourists in the valley has been stopped temporarily due to possible threats. They said that free rent service would be provided to tourists for a week. They said that the people should continue their routine activities, as the traffic was being run without any hindrance.
LOC FIRING: At least five civilians were injured in Azad Jammu Kashmir (AJK) during unprovoked shelling by Indian troops from across the Line of Control (LoC) on Monday. The shelling began at about 7am in the Nakyal sector of Kotli district.
Officials said that there was no let up in Indian aggression along the LoC in Nakyal sector after the Sunday attack. “There has been mortar shelling since 7am in the morning, targeting almost all villages of Nakyal,” a local police official said. So far, five people have been brought to the Tehsil Headquarters (THQ) Hospital in Nakyal, with multiple injuries.