Tangdhar Sector (J-K), Dec 1 : Fear has griped residents in the border region of Tangdhar Sector in Jammu and Kashmir over souring relations between nuclear-armed neighbours India and Pakistan in the wake of deadly Mumbai terror strikes.
With Islamabad threatening to withdraw its 100,000 soldiers from its western frontier and placing them on the border with India after reported fears of international consolidation against Pakistan for its alleged involvement in the Mumbai terror attacks, anxiety is writ large on faces of the people in border villages.
India has stepped up surveillance along the border with Pakistan as a precautionary measure.
Although both countries have denied reports about mobilization of troops on their respective borders, residents in the border areas are apprehensive.
"Since the ceasefire between India and Pakistan, the atmosphere was good here and there was peace here. But since Pakistan has said that they would send their border troops here people are afraid. They are afraid of going out fearing blasts," said Mohammad Sultan Khatana, a resident.
Cease-fire has been in operation along the Line of Control (LoC) since November 26, 2003 after the Kargil war, benefiting particularly the border residents greatly.
India has, however, accused Pakistan of breaching the cease-fire 35 times this year.
Despite ceasefire violations, the border residents felt secure but are now worried over the growing tension between the two countries and have appealed for maintaining peace.
"Here we will face a lot of problem as it is nearest to the border. We will face lots of problem. We don't want any disturbance. Since ceasefire we were living in peace. But if something happens we will face a lot of problems. We appeal to the government of both the countries to maintain peace," said Shahnawaz Butt, a resident.
The two nuclear-armed neighbouring countries have gone to war thrice since independence in 1947 and went to the brink of their fourth war after a 2001 militant attack on the Indian Parliament that New Delhi also blamed on Pakistan-based militants.