Even Children Become Casualty Of Enmity

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New Delhi: Taking a tough stand against Pakistan in the wake of the beheading of two Indian soldiers from across the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir, India has sent back a delegation of students from Pakistan.

Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Gopal Baglay said an NGO had invited a group of 47 Pakistan school children accompanied by their teachers as part of a student exchange program.

India has advised the NGO that this is not the right time for such exchange programs.

The delegation was coming to India on the same day when the Indian army soldiers were killed and their bodies mutilated .

In a ceasefire violation, the Pakistan Army had on May 1 opened rocket and mortar firing on two forward posts along the Line of Control. Pakistan’s Border Action Team (BAT) attacked an Indian joint patrol team and mutilated its two soldiers.

Pakistan has denied violating any ceasefire or killing Indian soldiers.

Students were to visit Pakistan Embassy

The students from Pakistan were scheduled to go on a day-long trip to Agra today and participate in an exchange of experiences with Indian students tomorrow at the Pakistan Embassy here.

Expressing regret over the return of the delegation, the NGO Routes2Roots said the trip had to be shortened and the students and teachers have been sent back to Lahore.

“Around 50 students aged between 11-15 years along with their teachers arrived in Delhi from Pakistan on May 1 and were supposed to meet their Indian pen friends and hosts of other programs which had to be cut short.

“Keeping in view the security and sentiments of fellow Indians the delegation has been sent back to Lahore safely,” Rakesh Gupta and Tina Vachani, founders of Routes2Roots, said in a statement.

In October last year, a similar programme by the NGO was cancelled after the announcement of surgical strike by India along the LoC in September.

“Even then as a precautionary measure we cancelled the exchange programme and now the same thing has recurred. If things go well, we will again bring the students, possibly within a month or two,” Rakesh told PTI.

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