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Tensions between India and Pakistan rise after fatal clash in Kashmir

Tensions between India and Pakistan rise after fatal clash in Kashmir

Pakistani forces opened unprovoked and heavy firing and shelling along LoC in Bhimbher Gali sector of Rajouri district this evening, a senior army officials said.

Vice-chief Lt Gen Sarath Chand said the army had been responding appropriately to Pakistani shelling, asserting that India would continue to give a "befitting reply".

The Indian army claims Pakistan violated the line of control ceasefire 868 times past year, up from 228 instances in 2016, and 152 violations in 2015.

Ruling PDP MLA Javaid Beig said that instead of provoking Pakistan, the House should appeal to both the countries to start a dialogue to resolve outstanding issues.

- Rifleman Ram Avtar, 28, of Baraka village in Gwalior, was also killed in the ceasefire violations in Rajouri on Saturday.

Those who died included Captain Kapil Kundu, who would have celebrated his 23rd birthday on February 10.

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Speaking at another event, the defence minister said that Islamabad retains the right to decide the measure and modicum of response to ceasefire violations by India.

India and Pakistan often accuse each other of violating a 2003 cease-fire agreement.

Each said their forces returned fire only in retaliation.

The ongoing shelling of civilian areas along the global border and PoK areas in Jammu and Kashmir has forced closure of at least 450 schools in the Kathua, Samba, Jammu, Rajouri and Poonch districts with the children migrating to safer places along with their parents.

These exchanges, the worst between the two in more than a decade, resulted in the death of four Indian soldiers over the weekend along the 776km "line of control" that divides Kashmir between the neighbours. Destroying Pakistani posts is not enough and we also need to inflict human damage on Pakistan's army personnel.

Kashmir, a Muslim-majority Himalayan region, is held by India and Pakistan in parts and claimed by both in full. In the year 2016 228 incidents were reported while in 2017 it was 860.

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