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HindustanTimes Sun,20 Apr 2014

Pak provocative action is 'turning point': Antony

PTI  New Delhi, January 11, 2013
First Published: 22:06 IST(11/1/2013) | Last Updated: 22:07 IST(11/1/2013)

Viewing with "serious concern" the increased ceasefire violations by Pakistan along the LoC in Jammu and Kashmir, India on Friday said the provocative action of killing of two soldiers on Tuesday was a "turning point" in the situation.

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Amid increased tension along the Line of Control after three days of exchange of fire, defence minister AK Antony said there were "enough troops" in Jammu and Kashmir and the government was taking all steps to protect the interest of the country.

The tension along the LoC was discussed at a high-level meeting in the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) where Defence Secretary Shashikant Sharma briefed about the situation in the wake of brutal killing of two Indian soldiers by Pakistani soldiers in Poonch area on Tuesday.

"It is not an isolated incident, it's increasing from the last one year. Ceasefire violations are also increasing. It is a matter of concern to us and the tragic, provocative actions two days back, that was a turning point at the moment," Antony told reporters in Gurgaon, on the outskirts of Delhi.

"This kind of occasional ceasefire violations and firing is a serious concern, because even though violence level in Kashmir has come down compared to the past, infiltration attempts are increasing," he said on the sidelines of a function to inaugurate housing project for armed forces.

As the level of tension increased after Pakistani troops violated ceasefire continuously and also closed the gates for cross-LoC trade yesterday, the Indian Army is maintaining utmost vigilance.

"We are closely monitoring the whole development and our entire border and Indian troops were on alert," Antony said.

He said the Director Generals of Military Operations (DGMOs) of the two countries were in touch, adding "let us see the result of that talk".

The government, in a coordinated manner, is closely monitoring the situation and "we will take every step to protect our interest and prestige of armed forces", Antony said.

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