Fear returns to Indo-Pak border: Heavy mortar shelling triggers migration from border villages

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Samba, Jan 3: Terror seems to have returned to the Indo-Pak border areas in Jammu and Kashmir, where heavy mortar shelling by Pakistan Rangers since the past twelve hours, has triggered migration from the affected border villages.

"We are leaving our homes and hearths shelled by Pakistan since last night. We are going to shelter camps. There is no end to the firing during past 12 hours," Namrita Devi of Beingallar area in Samba district said.

Fear returns to Indo-Pak border amid heavy mortar shelling.
A woman was today killed and eight other civilians were injured as Pakistani troops targeted villages and 13 border outposts with heavy mortar shelling in Kathua and Samba districts in the state.

The fresh ceasefire violations have triggered migration from border villages and over 1000 people have been evacuated from hamlets in Kathua and Samba districts, officials said.

The latest round of firing by Pakistan which started on New Year eve has left two persons dead, including a BSF jawan, and nine injured while five Pakistani Rangers have been killed in retaliatory firing by India.

It comes barely two months after the last major escalation that left 13 people dead and displaced 32,000 border residents. "We have become sitting ducks on the border for Pak guns.

Fear returns to Indo-Pak border amid heavy mortar shelling.
We are constantly living under fear and terror. When we go to fields or walk on roads we do not know when we will fall to their bullets," says Arvind Kumara, a shopkeeper from Mangu Chack area here.

The distraught people in long serpentine lines were seen leaving from the border hamlets in bull-carts, trucks, tempos and tractor trolleys.

"Over 4 villages have been evacuated apart from 300 border people in Kathua district," Shahid Iqbal Choduhary, Deputy Commissioner, Kathua told PTI.

"Four people have suffered injuries. We are awaiting shelling to stop so that we can evacuate people from 57 border hamlets, if required," he said. 

PTI

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