The Centre’s interlocutor Dineshwar Sharma has said that the Government of India should hold talks with Pakistan to end the hostility along the border. His statement comes amid increasing tension along the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir’s Uri sector. Nearly a thousand villagers have fled their homes in panic after cross-border shelling in the town.

Sharma said he was only talking to the Kashmiris, but the government will have to speak to Pakistan. “The current hostility at the border is a serious problem,” Sharma told the Rising Kashmir. “I am not going to speak to Pakistan. It is the government of the day which has to do the talking.”

Sharma concluded his latest visit to Kashmir on February 24. It was his fifth visit since he was appointed the special representative to Kashmir in October 2017.

Pakistani troops might have resorted to shelling earlier than usual this year because of less snowfall, officials have said. They estimated that more than 200 militants are waiting on the other side of the Line of Control – north of Pir Panjal – to cross into to Jammu and Kashmir. Uri is one of the major infiltration routes for the militants.