JAMMU: Pakistani troops made the highest number of ceasefire violations in the last 16 years along the J&K border in 2019, amounting to over 3,200 instances or an average of nine such violations daily.
Shelling and firing by Pakistani troops was "very heavy" in 2019, virtually making the 2003 India-Pakistan border truce "redundant", officials said.
There have been 3,289 ceasefire violations by the Pakistan Army along the Indo-Pak border in 2019, they said.
Of these, 1,565 ceasefire violations took place since August 2019, after the Indian government abrogated Article 370 and bifurcated the state of Jammu and Kashmir into two union territories.
Revealing the data in reply to a RTI query of social activist Rohit Choudhary, Director, Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), Sulekha said October recorded the highest number of ceasefire violations at 398 followed by 333 in November, 323 in August, 314 in July, 308 in September and 275 in March.
"Pakistani troops repeatedly targeted forwards posts and villages along the Line of Control (LoC) and the International Border (IB) to create a fear psychosis among the people," a senior police officer said.
In 2018, Jammu and Kashmir had recorded 2,936 instances of ceasefire violations by Pakistan with an average of eight cases daily, in which 61 people were killed and over 250 injured.
The violations continued in 2019 despite Pakistani troops vowing to maintain peace on the border during flag meetings with the Indian forces, the Army official said.
"Pakistan vows to maintain peace and strengthen border relations, but they do not keep their promises," he said.
The number of ceasefire violations by Pakistani troops in 2019 were over 300 more than in 2018 and over three times that of 2017, when 971 cases were reported.
In 2017, 31 people-12 civilians and 19 security forces personnel-were killed and 151 others suffered injures.
The officials said due to frequent shelling and firing incidents, fear gripped the border populace and prompted thousands of people to migrate to safer places.
People had to migrate to safer places on two occasions of shelling last year and three times the previous year, which affected their education and farm activities.
To protect border residents in view of increasing ceasefire violations in Jammu and Kashmir, the central government sanctioned Rs 415 crore for the construction of over 14,400 underground bunkers along the LoC and the IB and made efforts to speed up the work last year.
Over 8,600 bunkers have been constructed so far in Jammu region, they said.
Giving details of cases of ceasefire violations in the past decade, the officials said 405 cases of ceasefire violations were reported in 2015, and 583 in 2014.
There was a gradual increase in ceasefire violations by Pakistan between 2009 and 2013.
The corresponding figures for 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010 and 2009 were 347, 114, 62, 44, and 28 respectively.
The numbers of such violations were 77 in 2008, 21 in 2007 and three in 2006, according to official data.
For three years - 2004, 2005 and 2006 - there was not a single such violation on the border.
The Indian government led by late Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee entered into a border ceasefire agreement with Pakistan along the LoC in Jammu and Kashmir on November 26, 2003.
India shares a 3,323-km-long border with Pakistan, of which 221 km of the International Border (IB) and 740 km of the Line of Control (LoC) fall in Jammu and Kashmir.