India objects to Sino-Pak road and rail link29 July 2010
NEW DELHI: India has protested to China over a China-Pakistan highway, saying the Karakoram transit passes through a part of territory in Jammu and Kashmir which is 'illegally occupied' by Pakistan, Indian Foreign Minister S.M. Krishna told parliament on Thursday. 'India has clearly conveyed to China its consistent position that Pakistan was in illegal occupation of parts of Jammu and Kashmir since 1947 following reports that China was building a rail line and highway in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir,' the United News of India quoted Mr Krishna as telling the Rajya Sabha. Mr Krishna's written statement came in response to questions by deputies. He said that India had conveyed its concern to China and asked it to cease such activities. China was regarding Kashmir as a bilateral matter to be settled between India and Pakistan, Mr Krishna said while answering the questions. He said the government had seen reports to the effect that China was seeking to build a railway line and highway projects in PoK, New Delhi's name for Azad Kashmir, and it had taken up the issue with them. The government would keep a constant vigil on all developments having a bearing on India's national interest and take all necessary measures to safeguard it, UNI quoted the minister as saying. Answering a related question, Mr Krishna said India had taken up the reports of China building a dam on the upper reaches of Tsangpo- Brahmaputra, known as Tsangpo in Tibet, with China during his visit to Beijing in April. China had conveyed that it always had shown a responsible attitude towards trans-border rivers. The Chinese foreign minister had also clarified that the planned construction at Zangmu was that of a small power project and it would not store water or regulate the volume of water. It, therefore, would not have any adverse impact on downstream flows, he added. Mr Krishna said the two countries had established an expert-level mechanism to discuss cooperation on all issues regarding trans-bor-der rivers and it had held four meetings between September 2007 and April 2010.