Line of Control Current Affairs - 2019
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The government has issued orders to suspend the Line of Control (LoC) trade between Jammu & Kashmir and Pak Occupied Kashmir (PoK).
Why did the government suspend LoC trade?
- The LoC trade was initiated to facilitate the exchange of goods of common use between local populations across the LoC in Jammu & Kashmir.
- On the contrary, the reports indicated that Cross LoC trade routes were being misused by the Pakistan based elements for funnelling illegal weapons, narcotics and fake currency etc.
- NIA probes also indicated that a significant number of trading agencies engaged in LoC trade are operated by persons closely associated with banned terror organisations involved in fueling terrorism/separatism.
The notification by the Ministry of Home Affairs has stated that it has decided to suspend LoC trade at Salamabad & Chakkan-da-Bagh in Jammu & Kashmir. Further, a stricter regulatory and enforcement mechanism is being worked out & will be put in place in consultation with various agencies and the issue of reopening of LoC trade will be revisited thereafter.
Four indigenous Dhanush Howitzer guns were inducted to the Indian Army. The induction of Dhanush Howitzer guns gives major fire-power boost to the Indian Armed Forces.
- Dhanush Long Range Artillery Guns are the first ever indigenous 155 mm x 45 calibre long-range artillery guns.
- Dhanush Long Range Artillery Guns are equipped with inertial navigation-based sighting system, auto-laying facility, on-board ballistic computation and an advanced day and night direct firing system.
- The self-propulsion unit on Dhanush allows the gun to negotiate and deploy itself in mountainous terrains with ease.
- Dhanush is also electronically upgraded to enhance firing accuracies, laying speeds of the existing gun and to provide compatibility with various kinds of ammunition as well.
- Dhanushhowitzer is an improved version of Bofors guns acquired by India between 1987 and 1991.
- Dhanush howitzer is a reverse-engineered upgraded variant of the original Bofors design.
- Dhanush reportedly has a new maximum effective range of 38 kilometers in salvo mode.
- Dhanush howitzer is capable of firing eight rounds per minutes and needs a crew of six to eight artillerymen.
Dhanush makes outranged Pakistani artillery units more vulnerable to Indian counter-battery fire, while itself staying out of reach. Dhanush’s longer range and high rate of fire will also make it useful in tackling localised Pakistan Army’s offensives in sectors of the LoC where the terrain favours the Pakistani side.