The other face of war

New Delhi and Islamabad seem to covet only territory. They do not seem to care much about their own civilians who have become refugees of this undeclared war. Himal's writers on either side of the Line of Control find that civilian life is hell.

Chikothi is a small village in Azad Kashmir barely 15-km from the Line of Control. Villagers  stand  about in the bazaar when the air suddenly reverberates with the sound of artillery. The booming gets louder, but no one panics or runs for cover. "It´s a routine," said one shopkeeper nonchalantly. Nearby, a mosque and a small clinic lie half-destroyed by recent Indian shells. A market had been burnt to ashes and a pile of rubble is all that remains of a shop.

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Himal Southasian