Cross LoC Karwan-E-Aman Bus Service Resumes Today

Srinagar: The Karvan-e-Aman bus, operating between Srinagar and Muzaffarabad, capital of Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir (PoK), resumed this morning after remaining suspended from August 14, when Pakistan celebrated its Independence Day.

Meanwhile, 116 residents of PoK, who were stranded in Jammu for the past over a month after Poonch in Jammu region-Rawlakote bus service was suspended due to heavy shelling from Pakistan troops on Line of Control (LoC), are also on way to Kaman Post, the last Indian military post on this side of the border in Uri sector.

They are also likely to cross over to other side, while three residents of this side who also got stranded in PoK will return in the afternoon.

The peace bus with 42 PoK residents and eight residents of Kashmir left Srinagar for Kaman Post this morning, official source informed.

The bus has since reached Trade Facilitation Centre (TFC), Uri, where more travellers will board it. The total number of passengers travelling in the bus will be known only in the afternoon.

The bus could not operate on August 14 after a message was received from PoK.

The bus service, a major Confidence Building Measure (CBM) between India and Pakistan after 1999 Kargil War, continued despite unrest in Kashmir in 2016 and tension on the LoC, due to ceasefire violation and subsequent surgical strike by Indian troops in the PoK.

The cross-LoC bus service started on April 7, 2005 despite opposition by militant organisations has helped thousands of families, divided in 1947 due to partition, to meet each other after India and Pakistan agreed to allow travel of State subjects from both sides on travel permits, instead of international passport.

The travel permit is issued to the State subject from both sides of the LoC, only after their names are cleared by the intelligence agencies from India and Pakistan. However, only State subjects from both sides can avail the cross-LoC bus facility.