Cross border firing, shelling disrupts schools in J-K

Rajouri, Jammu and Kashmir, Sept. 5 (ANI): Schools hit hard by shelling from across the border reopened in border district of Rajouri, but a few students turned up on Friday as many parents were too scared to send their wards to attend classes.

Pakistani and Indian troops have been engaged in heavy cross-border firing for the last few months, leading to casualties of both civilians and soldiers.

Headmaster of Government Middle School in Kakora village, Abdul Qauoom, said that the attendance has dropped sharply since Pakistani troops began targeting civilians in border villages.

“For an entire week, work here (at the school) was done under a pall of terror. Also, a few casualties were reported (after the cross-border firing). Students in our school come from poor homes, and they are the ones who are most intimidated. That is why, attendance remained minimal. This is only natural, whenever shelling at the border is heard; parents would desist their children from attending schools,” he said.

For weeks, schools have remained closed in border areas in disputed Kashmir. A school student, Sania Kouser, said that her studies have suffered due to border skirmishes between the two countries.

“Our studies are suffering, since our school was shut down for the past two weeks. Whenever we step out of our homes, there is an undercurrent of terror,” she said.

There have been 245 ceasefire violations by Pakistan so far in the year, with 55 in August alone. (ANI)

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