Many AJK Residents Relocate Amidst LoC Ceasefire Violations

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Islamabad: Hundreds of families living in the most vulnerable areas along the restive Line of Control (LoC) in Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) are reported to have moved to the rear areas, officials and residents say.

“We have requested the people inhabiting the most exposed areas to move back until the situation improves,” says Ahmed Raza Qadri, AJK minister for civil defence.

Residents said the exchange of heavy fire continued in Khilana, Chakothi and adjoining areas throughout the night and also on Wednesday in intervals.

Officials said the federal government had sanctioned a scheme for construction of community protection bunkers in the vulnerable areas along LoC.

In 2018, a total of 678 such bunkers were built under the supervision of the Pakistan Army out of the planned 926. Work on the rest is under progress, officials said.

The minister said the educational institutions in the urban areas had also been closed for two days for the time being.

The higher authority asserted that the official machinery was fully prepared to meet any situation.

“We don’t want to create the impression that we are panicked or overwrought … we are vigilant and on hand,” he maintained.

He said holidays of all emergency staff had been cancelled and control rooms of the disaster management authority had been established in all districts.