Pakistani troops opened fire Friday along the border in the northern Indian state of Kashmir in an alleged cease-fire violation, the Indian news agency Press Trust of India, or PTI, reported Saturday. “Pakistani troops opened unprovoked firing from small arms and automatic weapons at our forward posts in Bhimbher Gali subsector in Poonch district of Jammu and Kashmir around 2230 hours yesterday,” Indian Army Lt. Col. Manish Mehta said. “There was no loss of life or damage to property in the firing on this side of LoC [line of control].”
Mehta added that Indian troops returned the Pakistani troops’ fire with equal-caliber weaponry, resulting in intermittent exchanges of fire.
The LoC, the de facto border in Kashmir, separates the India-controlled area and the Pakistan-controlled area. Both countries have maintained heavy military presences along the border since a truce was reached in 2003, with frequent cease-fire violations having been reported subsequently, with another one surfacing earlier this week.
The recently elected Narendra Modi-led Bharatiya Janata Party government in India alleged in July that Pakistan had violated the cease-fire more than 50 times since the beginning of the year and said 19 of those incidents had taken place since BJP took power in May.
“All CFVs [cease-fire violations] are taken up with the concerned authorities of Pakistan at the appropriate level through the established mechanism of hotlines, flag meetings, etc.,” PTI quoted Indian Defense Minister Arun Jaitley as saying.
The most recent alleged cease-fire violation came a few hours after Pakistan released an Indian soldier captured by Pakistani rangers near the Jammu district in the north this week.