Jammu: The ruling National Conference (NC) in Jammu and Kashmir said Monday that residents of Suchetgarh Kurian village in Samba district who had been forced to leave their homes because of shelling by Pakistan had returned.
The villagers had left their homes and taken temporary shelter in a community hall away from their village as their lives were endangered by the shelling.
"The National Conference delegation met several families of village Suchetgarh Kurian of Samba, who had taken temporary shelter in a community centre, and urged them to return to their homes. On the assurance of the delegation and the administration they shifted back to their dwelling units," a statement from the NC said.
"These villagers had taken temporary shelter in a community hall following shelling by Pakistan Rangers", the statement said.
National Conference senior vice president and legislator Surjeet Singh Slathia and provincial president Devender Rana had gone to interact with the villagers Monday.
"Expressing concern over the continued shelling in forward areas of Jammu, National Conference on Monday urged the centre to engage Pakistan in a meaningful dialogue for bringing to a halt the senseless and unwarranted skirmishes that have adversely impacted life in the border region", the statement said.
The statement also said, "The two leaders wished good sense to prevail upon the neighbouring country to end this unfortunate situation".
The party leaders visited Galad, Kuliyan Kali Badi, Jasso Chak, Samdhu and Jerdah in Samba and Ramgarh sectors on the instructions of party president Farooq Abdullah and Chief Minister Omar Abdullah. These areas too have been affected by shelling from Pakistan.
Devender Rana lauded the border dwellers for bearing the brunt of intermittent firing and hoped they would meet the situation with courage and fortitude.
"The disturbed conditions on borders only aggravate the situation and put innocent people under immense strain. There has to be some mechanism to avert such situations that create tension and turbulence on the borders," Rana said.
The NC leaders said their party will vigorously pursue the cause of the border people and insist on a special development component, employment package and insurance cover for the forward areas.
"This is imperative because these people don't only live in difficult conditions but also bear the brunt of cross-border skirmishes", Rana said.
Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde will arrive in the state Tuesday to take stock of the situation following frequent ceasefire violations by Pakistan Rangers.