Since July, 80 civilians have been killed by unrest in disputed Kashmir. This week, Pakistan reported two of its soldiers were killed in a cross-border skirmish with India. As a result, local residents were told to leave and withdraw ten-kilometers from the frontier.
CCTV’s Ravinder Bawa travelled to some of the villages along the border.
Between India and Pakistan: Life on the line of controlAfter Pakistan reported two soldiers killed in a skirmish with India, local residents were told to withdraw ten-kilometers from the frontier. For villagers in disputed Kashmir, living with this uncertainty and fear is nothing new.
Memories have come back to haunt Bibi living in Jeora village on the India-Pakistan border. She lost her husband and her son in cross-border firing three years ago. As she continues to grieve the loss, the fear of living on the line of control is agonizing her.
“It is very scary what to do, we have to leave our homes and sleep hungry,” said Bibi. “My kids are small and they feel very scared. One of my children had fever because of fear.”
Like Bibi, the villagers of Jeora have been living in fear of the border conflict for about 40 years.
Another resident, Hashimuddin, has survived light to heavy firing from across the border but he believes that war is better than living a life in fear of death.
For their safety, an advisory issued by administration officials in the border states have started town members fleeing to safer haven. Temporary shelters with basic facilities have been set up for the migrants to stay. But leaving their homes and livestock behind has been a tough decision.
Zulfikar Ali, a resident of Abdulia, says it is very difficult for them to leave behind the source of their livelihood.
“We left behind about four to 5,000 cattle… horses goats have all been left behind. Some will die due to shelling and some will die due to hunger, they are very expensive,” he said.
Business has come to a halt. Schools have been closed near the border areas. And the future of the families living on the line of control or LOC is uncertain.