Cross-border trade and bus service between India and Pakistan will resume at Jammu and Kashmir’s Poonch sector on Monday, after more than a fortnight-long suspension following escalation in tension at LoC over the brutal killing of two Indian soldiers by Pakistani troops.

“Cross-LoC bus service and trade would resume from January 28 along Chakan-da-Bagh crossing point in Poonch district,” Jammu and Kashmir Minister of State for Industries and Commerce Sajjad Kitchloo told PTI.

Pakistani authorities had conveyed on Saturday to the Indian side their willingness to resume trade and bus service along the borderline in Poonch, he said.

Mr. Kitchloo expressed the hope that trade across the Line of Control (LoC) would increase.

Cross-LoC trade and travel, described as a key confidence building measure, was suspended after escalation in tension between the two countries along LoC after two Indian soldiers were killed by Pakistani troops on January 8. One of the soldiers Hemraj was beheaded by Pakistani army regulars.

Pakistan army had on January 11 refused to open the gates for allowing cross-LoC trade at Chakan-Da-Bagh crossing point in Poonch district resulting in stranding of 25 J&K trucks carrying goods mostly vegetables for traders in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (PoK).

Chakan-Da-Bagh crossing point was started in 2006 to facilitate easier trade and travel between divided families of Jammu and Kashmir and PoK and is considered as a major confidence building exercise between India and Pakistan.