Srinagar: Tension rising for those living along the Line of Control (LoC) between India and Pakistan. Repeated ceasefire violations by Pakistan have triggered panic and fear among border residents.
Panic-stricken villagers in Samba near Jammu are ducking behind trees, walls for hours to avoid being hit by fire from Pakistani rangers who have breached the ceasefire agreement for the 14th time in the past fortnight.
"I have seen it in last many decades. We suffer the worst. Our fields and cattle are left unattended. We have to live in constant fear," says Prem Chand, a villager.
Baba Singh, a farmer, says, "There can be firing anytime. We don't know when we will be killed in crossfire.”
Thousands of villagers in paddy-rich belt of RS Pora, Samba, Pallanwala, Akhnoor, Pargwal and Hiranagar along the border are contemplating migration. The scene is similar to the 2003 ceasefire accord when these villages were bombarded with bullets and mortars rounds.
Hansraj, a farmer, says, "It was better in last few years but now continuous firing has set off a panic. Government too seems helpless."
In the last few weeks, the J&K government has been asking the villagers to stay put but without providing any single solution. The government’s response so far has been very poor.
The anxiety of the farmers on the border is growing by the minute. It's a very desperate situation for them to see their cattle and fields lying unattended. What is making the matters worse is the indifferent attitude adopted by the respective governments at the state and the Centre.
Till mid-August this year, 40 ceasefire violations have taken place. The ceasefire violations by Pakistan follow several infiltration attempts in which more than 35 militants have succeeded in coming into this side. It also comes close on the heels of detection of 400-meter long tunnel in Samba sector near the LoC.