By NewsGram Staff-Writer
New Delhi: Amid high tension, a 15-member high-level Pakistani delegation arrived in India for director level (DG) level talks. The DG level talk started on Thursday with Indian Border Security Force (BSF).
The delegation includes officials from Pakistan’s border force, The Rangers, who are led by Director General Major General Umar Farooq Burki.
The crucial DG level talks, which will continue till September 12, are likely to be focused on cross border ceasefire violations. There have been frequent ceasefire violations from Pakistan side of the border recently. On Wednesday, at least two BSF personnel were wounded in firing near Nowgam sector of Jammu and Kashmir. The Line of Control (LoC) in Poonch district also received firing from the Pakistan Army.
This DG level talk carries significant importance after a meeting between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif sought to talk and take measures on the issue of Kashmir. It further affected the National Security Advisor(NSA) level talks which was called off by Pakistan as India rejected their rhetoric of talking to separatists on Kashmir.
Earlier, the delegation arrived in India through Wagah-Attari border and received warm welcome by senior BSF officers. From there a special aircraft took them to Delhi.
The Indian side for talks include a 23-member team which will be headed by BSF Director General D.K. Pathak. It also includes officials from the home ministry, the Narcotics Control Bureau and the Survey of India.
A BSF official explained, “During the conference, discussions will be held on important issues like cross-border firing, infiltration and smuggling. The talks will also endeavour to focus on positive issues like different levels of communication, more simultaneous coordinated patrolling and other confidence building measures.”
The main motive of the talks would be to reduce the raising tension and improving relations between the two countries.
BSF’s former additional director general P.K. Mishra, however, said Pakistan may try to divert the agenda from the talks, as reports suggest the country may seek international monitoring on the issue of ceasefire violations. Mishra said, “Pakistan may try to divert the agenda of the meeting. They have been making attempts to put the blame of ceasefire violations on India by showing the world the damage on its side.”
With some 100 ceasefire violations along the India-Pakistan border since the Ufa talks, the issue is likely to dominates the agenda from the Indian side. Till June this year, there have been 199 ceasefire violations by Pakistan. Official figures reveal that around 430 ceasefire violations occurred on the international border while 153 violations were reported on the LoC in 2014. In 2013, it was 347.
According to reports, Pakistan has listed in its agenda a revived role for the United Nations Military Observers Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP) for intervening in ceasefire violations.
As per sources, issues that Pakistan has placed on agenda include the alleged use of objectionable language by troops on the Indian side, and lack of response on simultaneous coordinated patrolling along the border and other crucial issues. Pakistan is also expected to raise the issue of airspace violation by suspected unmanned aerial vehicles.
Pakistan had blamed India of violating its airspace when it shot down a drone in July. India, however, said the drone was not like any of those in the Indian inventory and appeared to be of a Chinese variety available off-the-shelf.