Srinagar: The Army handed over the body of a child, which had flown into a river at this side of Jammu and Kashmir, to the Pakistan army as a goodwill gesture.

Seven-year-old Abid Shaikh, a resident of a village in Gilgit-Baltistan in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK), had reportedly drowned in a river and his body was fished out in the Gurez setor of Bandipora district on July 9.

Three days later and after several efforts, the Indian authorities handed the body to Pakistan on Thursday in Gurez.

The body of the child was seen by two women in Burzil Nar, a fast-flowing stream that culminates in the Kishanganga river. The Army and civil authorities immediately retrieved the body and made efforts to identify it.

“As soon we came to know about it, we approached the Army and asked them to take up the matter with their counterparts across the border,” Bandipora deputy commissioner Shabhaz Mirza was quoted saying in a report by the Indian Express. As the area had no mortuary, they arranged icepacks carved from the mountains to prevent the body from decomposing, Station House Officer Tariq Ahmed said.

On Thursday, a physical contact was established along the LoC between the two armies in the Gurez sector for the first time. The LoC in the Gurez sector has remained a constant battlefield for nearly three decades as it is one of the key infiltration routes for the militants.

After the PoK boy went missing, his family had also made an appeal through social media and urged the authorities on both sides to help trace their son.