50 PaK guests arrive, 3 Kashmiris cross over to other side of LoC

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Srinagar, Oct 15: As many as 50 fresh guests from Pakistan administered Kashmir (PaK) arrived here on Monday while only three Kashmiris crossed over to the other side of the Line of Control (LoC) in the weekly Karvan-e-Aman bus, operating between Srinagar and Muzaffarabad.
“As many as 70 returnees also crossed sides at Kaman Post,” official sources said Monday evening.
The Karvan-e-Aman bus service resumed on Monday after remaining suspended for security reasons last week when separatists had called for general strike on the first phase of municipal elections in the state.
They said 50 residents of PaK, including 25 women and four children, arrived at Kaman Post after crossing the Aman Setu, peace bridge, on foot to meet their relatives, separated in 1947 due to partition. However, there was no returnee in the bus.
The number of guests coming from PaK goes up during summers and comes down during winters. On the contrary, the number of Kashmiris visiting PaK comes down during summers and goes up during winters.
“Three Kashmiris crossed over to the other side of the LoC to meet their relatives while 70 PaK residents, including 27 women and seven children, who had arrived here in previous buses, returned to their homes after completing their stay,” they added.
The inter cross-LoC bus service was one of the major Confidence Building Measures (CBM) taken by India and Pakistan, after both the countries agreed for a ceasefire on LoC and the International Border in Jammu and Kashmir, in 2003.
The peace bus service has been operating, despite repeated attempts by the militants to sneak into this side from PaK after the higher reaches close due to snowfall for winter months. The bus has since helped thousands of divided families to meet each other.
However, only state subjects from both the sides are eligible to travel in the bus, after their names are cleared by the intelligence agencies from both the sides.