The Pakistan occupied Kashmir’s (POK) PM Raja Farooq Haider khan has refused all the charges of India that the chopper in which he was travelling had entered Indian territory Sunday and had violated the LOC (Line of Control), a leading publication reported.
The PM in his defence said that he was infact very close to LOC but was within his territory. The POK PM further asserted that there was no need to inform the Indian authorities about it as it was not a military helicopter.
The Indian army official had informed on Sunday that a helicopter from Pakistan owned Kashmir (POK) had violated the LOC and had travelled into the Indian territories and as a result they were fired by small troops after which it returned back undamaged after about a minute, they said. Inside the chopper were PoK Prime Minister, Tourism Minister Mushtaq Minhas, and the province’s Education Minister Ifthikar Gilani.
Talking to a leading media publication, Haider said, “I had gone to Forward Kahuta to condole the death of the brother of one of my ministers and meet the residents of the area adjacent to the LoC. While we were passing through Abbaspur, the Indian army suddenly opened fire at my helicopter. Luckily, we remained unhurt and the helicopter was not damaged.” “We were very close to zero line but we were within our space. Moreover, it was a civilian helicopter so the Indian army should not have opened fire at it.”
Haider further asserted that the he often travels to that area and he did not feel the need to inform the Indian authorities because it was a Civilian helicopter. He said that that he will raise the issue before the Pakistan government and take appropriate actions.
PoK President Sardar Masood Khan also condemned the firing. Terming it an act of cowardice, the president said such acts by the Indian forces would not intimidate the Kashmiris living under the “oppressive Indian rule in their struggle for their right to self-determination.”
The Leader of Opposition in the National Assembly and Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) president Shahbaz Sharif said the attack was a severe violation of international and bilateral laws and also against the diplomatic norms. PoK Minister Minhas also denied reports in India that the incident was a Pakistan Army “plot” to assassinate the PoK PM, citing the ATC’s failure to alert the pilot.
The Indian side, however, maintains that the chopper hovered over the Karmara area in the Sarla battalion sector nearly 8 km from Poonch town around 12.13 pm, breaking the agreement between India and Pakistan that no helicopter can come within one km of the LoC and no fixed-wing aircraft within 10 km. A purported video of the incident showed a helicopter flying against the backdrop of hills, and small arms fire could be heard in the background.