An uneasy calm prevailed along the 192-km long International Border (IB) in Jammu region on Saturday as there has been no ceasefire violation by Pakistani troops since Thursday night.
Eight persons have been killed and nearly 90 others injured in mortar shelling and firing by Pakistan troops from October 1-9 along the IB in Jammu, Samba and Kathua districts forcing over 32,000 people from 113 border hamlets to flee.
“There have been no ceasefire violation from across the border along IB in Jammu region since Thursday night”, Divisional Commissioner, Jammu division, Shant Manu told PTI .
Mr. Manu said there was no firing and shelling by Pakistan along the borderline in Kathua, Samba and Jammu districts and there is peace along the border.
The last ceasefire violation took place on Thursday night when there was brief firing by Pakistan on four border out posts in Hiranagar sector of Kathua district.
“It was peaceful overnight after long spell of shelling and firing,” he said.
However, “people who have fled their homes in border areas will remain in shelter camps for the next few days until we are sure about prospects of peace along the border,” he said.
“We are watching the situation along the IB carefully”, a senior BSF officer said, adding a round-the-clock vigil is being maintained.
“We cannot read what is in the mind of Pakistan. Border people will have stay back in camps. We cannot trust people across”, District Magistrate, Jammu, Ajeet Kumar Sahu said.
Residents of border villages in Jammu, who were displaced due to the recent Pakistani shelling, say they are too scared to return home despite the guns falling silent.
“We don’t trust Pakistan anymore. They have killed innocent civilians by targeting villages. Who knows... This decline in shelling from their side might be a ploy to cause maximum damage after people return to their houses,” Ravinder Kumar, a resident of Abdullian village which is situated along the International Border, said.
“Returning to our houses right now means risking our lives. We don’t trust the Pakistani side anymore,” said Tarsem Singh, a resident of Arnia who shifted to Jammu city.