ISLAMABAD: The For­eign Office warned India on Thursday against any misadventure as ceasefire violations by Indian troops so far this year surpassed the figure of 700 — nearly double the violations reported last year.

“Our armed forces are capable of responding to any misadventure carried out by Indian forces,” Foreign Office spokesman Nafees Zakaria said at his weekly media briefing while denoun­cing the latest Indian violations that left two people dead and took civilian fatalities to 32 this year.

Violations by Indian forces have been rising over the past few years, more specifically after Narendra Modi became India’s prime minister, but the increase this year has been unprecedented, going up from 382 in 2016 to over 700 so far this year.

Indian Deputy High Commissioner J.P. Singh was summoned to the Foreign Office for receiving the protest over deaths of civilians in latest incidents of firing by Indian forces.

The two deceased have been identified as Diyaarwali-Kaliyaal village’s Zahur Elahi, 35, and Kakraan village’s Raishma Bibi.

Director General (South Asia & Saarc) Dr Muhammad Faisal told the Indian diplomat that “deliberate targeting of civilians was deplorable and contrary to human dignity and international human rights and humanitarian laws”.

He regretted that ignoring the calls for restraint, India has continued to violate the ceasefire on LoC and the Working Boundary.

At the media briefing, Mr Zakaria said Pakistan had encouraged peaceful engage­ment with India and emphasised the need for confidence-building measures. He noted that India had not reciprocated Pakistan’s peace gestures. Indian intransigence, he said, was in part due to advanced military technologies it had received from the US and other western countries.

Mr Zakaria said the western patronage had emboldened India to adopt aggressive military doctrines and even contemplate military adventurism.

Kulbhushan Jadhav

The FO spokesman said Pakistan would submit its countermemorial to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in Indian spy Kulbhushan Jadhav’s case by Dec 13. India submitted its memorial on Wednesday.

India had approached the ICJ against Pakistan for allegedly violating Article 36 of the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations by denying Jadhav consular access, who had been sentenced to death by a Field General Court Martial for his involvement in espionage and terrorism.

After a single round of oral observations, the ICJ in June restrained Pakistan from executing Jadhav until a final verdict in the case.

Mr Zakaria cautioned that India was attempting “to bring out the humanitarian aspect of a person who has made a public confession on how he was launched by India to carry out subversive and terrorist activities in Pakistan”.

Published in Dawn, September 15th, 2017