Tensions continue to mount on the Line of Control (LoC) with Pakistan suspending the cross-LoC Karvan-e-Aman (caravan of peace) bus that plies on the Poonch-Rawalakote (Pakistan -occupied Kashmir) route in Jammu division.
The weekly bus, which was slated to cross Chakan-da-Bagh crossing on Monday, will not ply on that day due to the tension on the LoC. “We have received a call from across the border that both trade and travel will remain suspended till further communication,” said Jatinder Singh, additional district commissioner, Poonch. Karavan-e-Aman bus was slated to carry 32 passengers from this side to meet their relatives across the LoC.
Jammu and Kashmir government has asked the permission of officers to take necessary steps to extend the permit for those passengers who might be stuck because of the suspension of bus service on the Poonch-Rawalakote route.
The decision to suspend the cross LoC bus has come a day after Pakistan unilaterally suspended the cross-LoC trade on Poonch-Rawalakote route when they did not open the gates at Chakan-da-Bagh crossing.
For the second day the trade remained suspended with more than 60 trucks stranded near the crossing. “Around 35 trucks were supposed to cross the LoC today. On Thursday, 25 trucks were supposed to cross. But on both days no trade could be carried out. Pakistan has communicated that the trade will remain suspended,” said Singh.
However, the trade from Uri-Muzaffarabad route in the Valley went on smoothly on Thursday as well as on Friday. “Fifty-one trucks carrying tomato, banana, garlic and other items crossed Kaman post on Friday. Nearly 44 trucks carrying fresh fruit, potato and onions also crossed into our side from across the LoC”, said Nazir Ahmad Baba, custodian of Trade Facilitation Center, Uri.