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Trucker has diplomatic cover: Pakistan

Tuesday, 21 January 2014 - 12:00pm IST | Place: Srinagar | Agency: DNA
Indo-Pak standoff worsens as Pakistan defies international conventions.

The LoC standoff has taken a new spin after Pakistan defied all the international conventions and claimed diplomatic immunity for a trucker who has been arrested by J&K police for smuggling Rs 100 crore worth narcotics from Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (PoK) into the Valley.

“Director general of trade and travel of PoK (Brigadier (retd) Mohammad Ismail Khan) told us during a meeting that the driver (caught with brown sugar) has a diplomatic immunity. We told them do they really believe that drivers (plying cross LoC trucks) have diplomatic immunity. We also told them to show us any order which says that they have the diplomatic immunity,” Shailendra Kumar, divisional commissioner of Kashmir, told dna.

The standoff began on Friday when Jammu and Kashmir police arrested a PoK driver after 114 packets of contraband brown sugar worth Rs100 crore were recovered from a his truck. A local trader, who was to receive the consignment, has also been arrested in the valley.

Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (PoK) authorities have detained 27 Indian drivers along with their trucks demanding the release of Pakistani driver along with truck and the consignment of brown sugar. Pakistani authorities have also refused to receive 48 drivers and their trucks that had arrived here on Friday.

“We asked them to speak to your higher ups. It is our land and our law will take its course. We have no authority to release the driver. The matter is before the courts which will only decide,” said Kumar.

Jammu and Kashmir government has written to the centre to take the stand off issue with Pakistan through the diplomatic channels. This followed the communication from the district development commissioner of Baramulla GA Khawja to J&K government to take up the issue with the external affairs ministry for perusal of matter with Pakistan.

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