Uri: As the colourfully decorated trucks from across the border pull up at the Salamabad, the Uri trans-LoC trade facility, 35-year-old trader Tajamul Masoodi is beaming with joy. It's business as usual for the apple merchant. Trade through the Uri road is running smoothly in contrast to Chakan-da-Bagh, Poonch, where the mutilation of two Indian soldiers has shut trade for 12 days now.
"Trade did not suffer from here... In the coming days, we hope trade buries the existing hostilities," says Tajamul.
Despite skirmishes, breaking first in Churanda village on LoC - not far from here - and Poonch, this small stretch in Uri is brimming with business activity. It belies the tension that exists on the boundary where Pakistani troops have repeatedly breached the ceasefire agreement.
"It is going on. We hope this place is remembered more for people-to-people contact than the Indo-Pak tensions," says a trader.
Trade at Uri - which completes four years - has grown to Rs 500 crore annually. More than 200 traders and hundres of labourers have benefited from it. For the soldiers of the two countries, the LoC is the line of conflict but for the traders, it means line of commerce and despite the current hostilities, the traders want that meaning to remain the same, now and in the future.