Indian Army Chief General Manoj Mukund Naravane has said that the restoration of ceasefire in February between Indian and Pakistani militaries along the Line of Control (LoC) is holding and contributed to the overall sense of peace and well-being in border areas, reported News TV channel.
According to Hindustan Times on Sunday, Indian Army Chief Naravane said: “This is the first step on the long road to normalization of ties between the two countries. We would like the ceasefire to continue. It has definitely led to an improvement in the security situation and benefited civilians living in the forward areas.”
In a surprise development, Indian and Pakistani militaries announced on February 25 that they had begun observing a ceasefire along the LoC from midnight of February 24. India and Pakistan had agreed to a ceasefire on the LoC in November 2003, but it was frequently violated.
However, the Indian army chief also vowed that “Counterterrorism operations will continue.’
Peace along the LoC is mutually beneficial, Naravane said. “The population living on either side suffers due to violence along the LoC. I am sure the Pakistan army is also concerned about the population and hopefully the ceasefire will hold,” the Indian army chief said.
After February 24, there has been a solitary instance of cross-border firing along the LoC between the Indian Border Security Force and Pakistan Rangers.