New Delhi: India today put off a proposal for a flag meeting at the last minute and decided to observe Pakistan's “behaviour” in the coming days before any engagement at the commander level along the border in Jammu and Kashmir.
A message was sent to BSF Director General D K Pathak earlier in the day for seeking a commander-level flag meeting to de-escalate the tension which mounted last night again when firing was reported from nearly 40 posts along the border and Line of Control, official sources said.
A senior Home Ministry official had said that a flag meeting was to be sought but the plan had to be dropped and it was decided to “observe the behaviour of Pakistan” in the coming days before making any such overtures.
During the course of the day especially after Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh made a sharp attack on Pakistan at an election rally at Latur in Maharashtra, the Home Ministry officials decided to put the proposal for the flag meeting on hold, the sources said.
In a stern warning to Pakistan, Singh asked it to put an end to firing and ceasefire violations along the border in Jammu and Kashmir saying if such breach continues, the army and every youth of this country will give a befitting reply. Pathak, who was touring Sambha sector today, is believed to have sent a report to the Home Ministry about the situation along the International Border.
The situation along the border turned for worse after five civilians were killed in heavy shelling from across the border in Arnia village.
According to the sources here, another person from the same village has been declared brain dead by the doctors. The last flag meeting along the border was held on September 5 when the Pakistani side had got in touch over hotline with the local commander over a ceasefire violation. The Home Ministry officials expressed hope that after a commander level meeting, the matter will be solved, the sources said.
Pakistani troops violated the ceasefire thrice by targeting 40 Border Out Posts and 25 border hamlets with heavy mortar shells in Jammu sector and LoC areas in Poonch district of Jammu and Kashmir, leaving nine persons injured.