Kashmir all set for cross-LoC trade from Tuesday (Lead, changing dateline)

October 18th, 2008 - 10:44 pm ICT by IANS  

Srinagar, Oct 18 (IANS) All arrangements are in place for the cross-Line of Control (LOC) trade between the two parts of divided Kashmir through the Srinagar-Muzaffarabad road from Tuesday.“A lorry trial run was carried out today on the newly laid bridge at the Kaman Post on the LoC,” an official told IANS here Saturday.

Trucks carrying consignments across the LoC would use this bridge to cross over to the Indian and Pakistan administered parts of Kashmir from Oct 21.

“Trucks from our side would unload their consignments at the Chakoti transit camp on the Pakistani side of the LoC while trucks coming here from Muzaffarabad would unload their consignments at the Salamabad trade facilitation centre near the border town of Uri,” the official said.

“A state-of-art X-ray scanner is being brought here from Surat which will be installed at the Salamabad trade facilitation centre before Tuesday. It would scan trucks without unloading them,” the official said.

A trade facilitation officer, who would be of the rank of a superintendent of customs, would issue permits for the cross-LoC trade.

“The permits would be issued based on the reports from the local police and the criminal investigation departments,” the official said.

Trucks for the cross-LoC trade would carry a load of not more than one-and-a-half tonnes.

After unloading their consignments at Salamabad and Chakoti, the trucks would return to their side of the LOC.

“The trade consignments would then be lifted from the two trade facilitation centres for delivery to the consignees,” the official said.

To begin with, 21 items have been cleared for the cross-LoC trade. These include fruits, carpets, shawls, wall hangings, red-kidney beans, black mushrooms and papier mache items from the Indian side.

From the other side, trade in precious stones, dry fruits, wall hangings and rock salt among others has been permitted.

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