Over 40 stranded as Pakistan suspends bus service
Six Indians from Jammu and Kashmir also had to return from PoK but they too could not return as the bus from the Pakistan side also didn’t turn up at the gates.Updated: Aug 20, 2019 00:14 IST
Forty-two residents of Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir(PoK) were stranded in Poonch and six Jammu and Kashmir residents in PoK on Monday after Pakistan refused to open gates on the Line of Control and suspended the weekly Poonch-Rawalakot bus service. Rawalakot lies in PoK.
Poonch deputy commissioner Rahul Yadav said, “Every Monday there is a bus service between Poonch and Rawalakote in PoK via Chakan-da-Bagh but today it didn’t cross the border.There were 42 PoK citizens in Poonch district, out of whom 27 citizens were due for their return to PoK today [Monday]. We conveyed the message to Pakistani authorities but they didn’t respond and hence the bus service could not operate.”
Six Indians from Jammu and Kashmir also had to return from PoK but they too could not return as the bus from the Pakistan side also didn’t turn up at the gates.
Mohammed Imran, a resident of the Rawalakot, told media persons, “We had to return today but the gates were not opened...We had a travel permit for 28 days, we have now overstayed here for 15 days...We request the Pakistani authorities to open the gates so that we can return home and those from Jammu and Kashmir, who had gone to PoK, can also return to their homes.”
The weekly service was earlier suspended following escalating tensions between the two nations after the Pulwama terror attack on 14 February in which 40 CRPF personnel were killed. But it was subsequently resumed. The tension between the two nations escalated following the IAF attack on Jaish-e-Mohammed’s training camp at Balakot in Pakistan’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province on February 26.
First Published: Aug 19, 2019 23:31 IST