BSF-Rangers Likely To Hold Flag Meet Today

BSF-Rangers Likely To Hold Flag Meet Today

26 October 2013
The Daily Excelsior
Sanjeev Pargal

Jammu: The BSF and Rangers are likely to hold a flag meeting tomorrow to de-escalate tensions on the International Border, which had led to one fatal and 30 non-fatal casualties of BSF and civilians in past 12 days apart from migration of the people even as calm prevailed on the IB in Jammu sector for second consecutive day today. Official sources told the Excelsior that if everything goes well the BSF and Rangers are likely to hold the first high level contact at Octroi Post in RS Pura sector tomorrow to take measures to maintain ceasefire and restore normalcy on the International Border, which has completely been shattered for past 12 days with people staying indoors or migrating to safer areas. “It would be a high level contact, most likely at the DIG level. The venue could be Octroi Post in RS Pura sector,” sources said, adding the BSF would strongly take the issue of ceasefire violations by Pakistan Rangers on the International Border leading to death of a BSF jawan and injuries to 30 others including BSF soldiers and civilians. The BSF was likely to ask Pakistan to maintain November 2003 ceasefire agreement so that the border civilians live in peace. It would also warn the Rangers against aiding and abetting infiltration attempts by the militants. Pakistan was reported to have suffered extensive damage in retaliatory firing by the BSF. Sources said the BSF retaliation was necessitated to silence the enemy guns, which had been raining mortars and bullets on the civilian areas. Sources said the flag meeting could lead to restoration of peace on the International Border. After the killing of an infiltrator in Samba sector last week, the BSF had established a casual contact with the Rangers and asked them to take back body of the intruder. The Rangers had refused to take back the body. According to sources, no ceasefire violation has been reported from any forward area on the IB and Line of Control (LoC) for past two consecutive days. Though it has restored confidence of people to some extent, panic still prevailed in the border villages with people staying indoors at most of the places along the IB. “No ceasefire violation has been reported from any part of IB and LoC since yesterday morning. Complete normalcy was prevailing on the borders,” they said. Despite no firing, about 150 villagers from Abdullian and Chandu Chak migrated to RS Pura this morning and took shelter at Social Welfare Department building at RS Pura. In other villages of RS Pura and Arnia sectors, some of the people were seen working in their fields in the forward areas but this was not the case in Kanachak, Pargwal and Garkhal, where the people preferred to stay indoors. “Though there has been no shelling or firing, we preferred to stay indoors. We are not taking any chances after injuries of six persons,” a resident of Garkhal, Ram Lal, said on phone, adding the people would wait and watch for couple of days before taking to the fields, where crops were ready for cutting. Sources said the people of forward villages of Nanga, Jasso Chak and SM Pur in Ramgarh sector of Samba district, who had migrated to Government Higher Secondary School, Ramgarh and Avtaal Community Hall respectively returned to their houses this morning after the firing stopped. Only few people came back to the school and community hall tonight after two days lull in firing. In Garkhal forward area of Akhnoor sector, the people from forward village of Sidhar, who had migrated to Government Higher Secondary School, Rajpura, returned this morning to their houses but came back to the school in the evening.