SRINAGAR: Despite heightened tension on the Line of Control (LoC) due to shelling by Pakistani troops after surgical strike by Indian troops across the border, one guest from Pakistan administered Kashmir (PaK) arrived here while five Kashmiris crossed over to the other side to meet their relatives, separated in 1947.
Meanwhile, four returnees also crossed sides at the LoC in the Karvan-e-Aman bus operating between Srinagar and Muzaffarabad, capital of the PaK, official sources told UNI.
They said the weekly bus left Srinagar early this morning for Kaman post, the last Indian military post on this side of the LoC in Uri sector, where fidayeen attacked Army Brigade headquarters on September 18 killing 18 soldiers and as many injured. Four Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) militants were also killed in the encounter.
They said only one PaK resident arrived at Kaman post after crossing the Aman Setu, peace bridge on foot. Three Kashmiris, who had gone to the PaK, returned here after completing their stay there.
Sources said five residents of Kashmir also crossed over to the PaK while one PaK resident returned to his homes after completing his stay here today.
The Karvan-e-Aman bus service, barring July 11 and 18, continued despite the unrest in the Valley where 86 people were killed and over 9,500 others injured in security force and police action since July 9, a day after Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani and two other militants were killed in an encounter in Anantnag, evoking massive protest.
The bus service on these days was suspended owing to strike by separatists for security reasons, while on July 4 and September 12, it was suspended in view of Eid festivals.
During the unrest, the bus from Srinagar to Kaman post is leaving Srinagar early in the morning to avoid stone pelting during the day. Similarly, people coming from the PaK had to wait at Uri before starting journey towards their respective destinations late in the night to avoid stone pelting.
The bus service, introduced on April 7, 2005, has helped thousands of families divided due to partition in 1947 to meet each other after India and Pakistan agreed to allow travel of state subjects from both the sides on travel permits instead of international passport.
However, people are allowed to travel only after their names are cleared from intelligence agencies from both sides.
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