The BSF and Pakistan Rangers held a sector-commander level flag meeting at Octroi post in Suchetgarh area of RS Pura sector Monday evening to restore sanity on the border after Pakistani firing killed two BSF men and injured 14 civilians on Sunday in Pargwal sector of Jammu district.
The Rangers had requested for the flag meeting after sustained retaliatory fire by the BSF following Sunday’s sniper fire and shelling in Pargwal sector, a BSF official said.
BSF Jammu frontier inspector general Ram Awtar said, “Three sector commanders of the BSF Jammu frontier participated at the sector commander-level flag meeting. Pakistan Rangers were led by a sector commander and wing commanders. Deputy inspector general PS Dhiman led the BSF.”
"Meeting went off in a conducive atmosphere with the prime focus to maintain peace and tranquillity on the border. It was further decided to hold next meeting on June 21," he added.
The meeting comes after Pakistani troops once again targeted Indian posts and villages along the International Border (IB) in Jammu and killed two BSF personnel, including an officer, on Sunday. The heavy firing and shelling from the Pakistani side for almost 12 hours in Pragwal area of Akhnoor, Kanachak and Khour sectors of Jammu district had ended 12 days of lull in the border skirmishes.
The firing from across the border in violation of the ceasefire agreement prompted a strong and effective retaliation by the BSF. On May 29, 2018, the DGMOs of India and Pakistan had agreed to "fully implement" the ceasefire pact of 2003 in "letter and spirit" forthwith to stop border skirmishes in Jammu and Kashmir.
Meanwhile, the Pakistan Army said on Monday that said that there was no space for any war with India but warned that its desire for peace should not be mistaken for weakness. Addressing a press conference, Major General Asif Ghafoor, the Director General of Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), the media wing of the army, accused India of carrying out 1,077 ceasefire violations since the start of 2018 to date. "Our defence, our desire for peace, should not be mistaken for weakness," he said.
Ghafoor added that Pakistan had not responded to Indian firing, which followed an agreement by the two countries' militaries to adhere to the 2003 ceasefire agreement, but was "compelled" to respond only when civilians were targeted.He claimed that Pakistan wants to respect the truce agreement.
"The Indians have to realise and understand where they want to go (in the future). We are two nuclear powers and there is no space for war," Ghafoor said.
Amid a spike in grenade attacks in Kashmir and tense borders, Union home minister Rajnath Singh is scheduled to visit the state on June 7 and 8 to review security, especially in light of the annual Amarnath Yatra pilgrimage that begins on June 28.
Pakistan has violated the ceasefire along the Line of Control (LoC) and the international border close to 1,100 times this year, resulting in the death of over 35 people.