Pakistan has reportedly violated ceasefire and began firing and shelling posts along the Line of Control (LoC) in the Poonch district.
According to Indian defense forces, troops from both nations traded in heavy firing.
The relations between India and Pakistan have always been tense. The two nations never really recovered from the violent partition in 1947. Over the decades, they have engaged in major wars like the ones that took place in 1965 and 1971. The Kargil War was fought during the winter months of 1998 and 1999.
There have been attempts to foster peace between the two countries but those have often stalled or ended in failure. The relations have further deteriorated post the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks that was orchestrated by Pakistani nationals. The two countries have also fought over control of Kashmir.
According to sources in the Defence Ministery, the action from the Pakistani side was unprovoked. A defense spokesperson released a statement noting, “Pakistan Army initiated unprovoked and indiscriminate firing of small arms, automatics and mortars from 0534 hours today in Poonch sector along the Line of Control. Indian Army is retaliating strongly and effectively.
Pakistan is yet to comment on the development.
Poonch is a district in Jammu and Kashmir. According to the India, Pakistan fired at both military and civilian posts in the region. The shelling on August 12th, 2017 resulted in a civilian and a junior level Army officer being killed. On August 13th 2017, Pakistan reportedly violated ceasefire four times by firing at Krishnagati, Nowshera, Mankote and north Kashmir. Three Indian jawans have been injured.
The number of times Pakistan has seemingly violated ceasefire has increased in 2017. By August 2017, there have been 285 violations by the Pakistani Army. In comparison, in the whole of 2016, there were 228 violations. A total of eight Army personally were killed due to the ceasefire violations last year. A total of 11 including nine soldiers have been killed as a result of ceasefire violations from the Pakistani Army in the month of July alone.
The two nations have recently marked 70 years of having won independence from the British Empire.
Our assessment is that while India should take a firm stance against attacks from Pakistan, we should also be strategic in our response. At this moment, we have a larger adversary towards the East that seems keen to engage in a limited war.