Indian authorities announced in a press release on Thursday that they were suspending cross-border trade in Jammu and Kashmir as Pakistan-based elements were using commercial routes to smuggle drugs, weapons and money.
"The LoC trade mechanism is therefore being suspended pending the introduction of a tighter regulatory system. This is to ensure that only bona fide trade takes place, for the benefit of the people of Jammu and Kashmir, through this mechanism," the government said in a document obtained by Sputnik.
This comes after earlier this month, a source in the Indian Foreign Ministry told Sputnik that the state was ready to "respond firmly and decisively" to any provocations by Pakistan in the disputed region of Kashmir.
Relations between India and Pakistan took a turn for the worst earlier this year. Tensions soared after a deadly attack in Kashmir on 14 February, when a suicide bomber attacked an Indian security convoy, killing over 40 troops. Responsibility for the attack was later claimed by Pakistan-based terrorist group Jaish-e-Mohammed. The tragedy led to heightened tensions between the two South Asian neighbors and an exchange of air raids.
India has repeatedly accused Pakistan of supporting the militants and having a "direct hand" in the Kashmir incident. Pakistan, however, has rejected all allegations.