Amidst the face-off between India and Pakistan following the Pulwama terror attack, India government had had withdrew the Most Favored Nation status and had imposed a 200% hike on the custom duty for the import of Pakistani products and now, the government has put on hold the trade with LoC.
The officials have alleged that the route across the LoC was being misused for the terror activities and hence, the decision has been taken and the trade has currently been “suspended” as the facility across the border might be getting used by the terror outfits across the border.
A statement issued by the Home Ministry read as, “Government of India has decided to suspend the LoC trade at Salamabad and Chakkan-da-Bagh in Jammu and Kashmir with immediate effect. A stricter regulatory and enforcement mechanism is being worked out and will be put in place in consultation with various agencies. The issue of reopening of LoC trade will be revisited thereafter.”
As per a report published in The Indian Express, a spokesperson of the Home Ministry has stated that the government received some reports that the trade across the LoC is being misused by the Pakistan-based elements and weapons, fake currencies, narcotics are being transferred to India via the business route.
The official further added that the government has acted upon the inputs from the NIA and the Intelligence Bureau in order to resist the “the consequent higher duty (after the MFN status was lifted), cross-LoC trade is likely to be misused to a much larger extent by Pakistan.”
India and Pakistan have been involved in a bitter relationship since the Pulwama terror attack took place and India responded with a “pre-emptive non-military” air strike in Balakot at the terror camps of Jaish-e-Mohammad.