India breaking the ceasefire
MUZAFFARABAD: On Monday morning, Indian troops killed a villager in Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) while he was working in his field along the Line of Control (LoC), inflicting a second “unprovoked” ceasefire violation in as many months.
According to Riaz Mughal, a police official in the Kotli district, “at around 8am today, Ghayas Deen, son of Saif Ali, aged 62, who was cutting grass near the LoC, was shot and martyred by the Indian army.”
The victim lived in Oli village, which is part of Nakyal sector. Before a ceasefire agreement was struck in February 2021, the area, which serves as an administrative subdivision of the Kotli district, suffered a significant number of casualties from Indian forces’ bombardment.
SP Riaz Mughal claimed that “the Indian troops opened fire upon him without any provocation, leaving him dead on the spot.”
According to Tariq Mahmood, a police official at Nakyal police station, Oli village is only a few hundred meters from the Line of Control, and Mr. Deen’s shooting location is also nearby.
In times of calm, “many villagers have fertile lands along the LoC and cultivate them,” he said. Ghayas Deen had gone there to gather fodder, as is customary for the locals who live close to the Line of Control.
The sound of gunfire reverberated across the town as three additional people were walking to work at the time.
According to Tariq Mehmood, the policeman in charge at Nakyal, “when they approached the area from which the sound came, they saw Mr. Deen lying dead.”
“In the upper part of his body, he had taken five to six bullets.”
Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) issued a statement in which it described the incident as “blatant Indian aggression” and a blatant breach of the current ceasefire agreements.
The military’s media wing said, “Pakistan desires peace and tranquility at its borders, but all necessary our citizens.”
“At the time and location we choose, we will appropriately respond to any misadventure against the people of Pakistan.”
Political leaders in Azad Kashmir have denounced the Indian army’s most recent breach of the ceasefire.
“As another innocent Kashmiri has lost his life at the hands of trigger-happy Indian soldiers on our side of the LoC today, I call upon the UN to take stock of the situation and do its stuff to establish lasting peace in our motherland by granting Kashmiris their inalienable right to self-determination through a free, fair, and impartial plebiscite,” wrote former prime minister of the AJK Sardar Tanveer Ilyas in a post on X (formerly Twitter).
On June 24, Indian troops shelled the Tetrinote area of the Poonch district, resulting in the martyrdom of two villagers and the injury of another. It was the first significant ceasefire violation in more than two years.
Until they reached a historic agreement in November 2003, Pakistani and Indian troops frequently engaged in artillery battles and skirmishes along the 740-kilometer-long Line of Control (LoC).
The agreement remained in effect for more than ten years, excluding rare occurrences.
However, ceasefire violations increased in frequency in 2016, killing and hurting civilians as well as destroying their homes in Azad Kashmir.
Spirit of the Nov 2003 accord and addressing the “core issues” that threaten peace and security in a surprise statement in February 2021.
Since then, the LoC had been fairly silent, but on Monday, the Indian side broke the silence.