The director generals of military operations of India and Pakistan held unscheduled talks at Islamabad’s request on Wednesday, the Defence Ministry said. Pakistani DGMO Major General Sahid Shamshad Mirza raised the matter of civilian deaths caused by retaliatory firing by India along the Line of Control, for which Indian DGMO Lieutenant General Ranbir Singh expressed grief. However, he emphasised that Indian troops had only targeted locations from where Pakistani forces had carried out ceasefire violations.

Islamabad had claimed earlier on Wednesday that Indian soldiers had targeted a passenger bus and claimed several civilian lives in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir’s Lawat area. Singh further brought up the issue of civilian and military casualties on the Indian side caused by unprovoked firing by Pakistan, the statement said.

The Indian DGMO also flagged the infiltration attempts by militant groups from across the border as well the killing of three Indian soldiers by Pakistani commandos in Kashmir’s Macchil on Tuesday. The body of one of the jawans was found mutilated. Singh warned his Pakistani counterpart that his troops will respond to any unprovoked firing and infiltration attempts, urging Mirza to discourage the country’s armed forces from violating the ceasefire.

Meanwhile, India’s External Affairs Ministry summoned Pakistan’s Deputy High Commissioner Syed Haider Shah to lodge a protest against the ceasefire violations and the deaths of the three soldiers in Machhil, ANI reported. Following the killing of the three soldiers, the Indian Army had said “retribution will be heavy for this cowardly act” and launched a massive operation along the LoC.

Relations between the neighbouring countries worsened after the Indian Army conducted surgical strikes along the LoC on September 29. Pakistan has also set up a committee to frame a “doable and sustainable India-Kashmir policy. The foreign affairs advisor to Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, Sartaj Aziz, said Islamabad will also reach out to sections of the Indian public that are opposed to the Narendra Modi government’s “extremist” policies on the Kashmir dispute.