Military officials of India and Pakistan discussed on the hotline the escalation in cross-border firing in Jammu and Kashmir but there was no signs of a solution to the standoff. In all, the Pakistani troops violated the ceasefire four times on Tuesday, security and civil officials said.

Officials of the Directorate General of Military Operations (DGMOs) of the two countries talked over hotline for five minutes during which both the sides accused each other of violating the ceasefire, Army sources said in Delhi.

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Today's incidents came a day after five villagers were killed and 34 injured in one of the worst ceasefire violations by Pakistan.

Pakistan's night-long mortar-bomb attacks and rattle of heavy guns has sent the border villagers scurrying for cover with fear writ large on their face. They fled their mud-houses on buses, tractor-trollies and bull-carts to safer places in Jammu leaving behind deserted hamlets.

With no let up in ceasefire violations at the Line of Control(LoC), anti-Pakistan protests rocked Jammu and other areas today to protest the firing and shelling.

"There was fresh ceasefire violations by Pakistan at Banwat and Hamirpur along LoC in Poonch. The firing started at 1620 hours with Small Arms and Mortars", Defence Spokesman Lt Col Maneesh Mehta said.

"Own forces responded effectively and appropriately. No casualty till last report came in", he added.

In another ceasefire violation earlier, Defence Spokesman Lt Col Maneesh Mehta said Pakistani troops opened fire with small arms in Balnoie forward belt along LoC in Poonch district around 1420 hours.

The Army retaliated effectively and the exchange of fire is going on in the area, he said, adding there was no loss of life or injury to anyone on the Army side.

In a ceasefire violation in the morning, Pakistan Rangers resorted to firing and mortar shelling in Arnia town morning, a police officer said.

A shell also exploded near the compound wall of a police station in Arnia, leaving six persons injured, he said.

"Pakistani Rangers had fired mortars and opened heavy fire on BSF posts along the International Border since 2100 hours last night", BSF Spokesman Vinood Yadav said.

"As many as 40 BSF BoPs were affected by the fire from Pakistan side", Yadav said, adding that firing and shelling was targeted on areas along IB in Arnia, RS Pura,Kanachak and Pargwal sub-sectors along IB in Jammu and Samba districts.

There has been heavy firing and mortar shelling on 20 to 25 border hamlets along the International Border in Arnia, RS Pura, Pargwal, Ganjansoo and Kanachak belts of Jammu district since last night, District Magistrate, Jammu, Ajeet Kumar Sahu said.

Three persons have been injured in the firing in Jammu border areas and have been hospitalised, officials said.

In view of the firing, over 1,000 people were also shifted to camps overnight.

Pakistan asks India to exercise restraint along LoC

Amid escalation of ceasefire violations along the LoC, Pakistan today accused India of rejecting its efforts to preserve tranquility at the border and asked India to give peace a chance by "restraining" its forces.

Expressing deep concern over the situation along the Line of Control (LoC, Advisor to Pakistan Prime Minister on National Security and Foreign Affairs, Sartaj Aziz said, the "Indian government has not been able to restrain its forces despite strong diplomatic protest by Pakistan."

"We call upon Indian government to immediately cease fire and shelling and help us preserve tranquility," he said in a statement.

Aziz claimed that Pakistan government has been exercising "utmost restraint and responsibility" though India have been firing and shelling for a week.

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