March 2017 News
India Reacts Sharply to Pak High Commissioner's Remarks on Kashmir23 March 2017
New Delhi: India on Thursday strongly reacted to Pakistan High Commissioner Abdul Basit's remarks on Jammu and Kashmir, saying they are not in keeping with 'diplomatic niceties and are tantamount to interference' in the country's internal affairs. The External Affairs Ministry asserted that Pakistan would be well-advised to effectively address the challenge of terrorism emanating from that country, which has adversely affected its relations with other countries. 'We have seen media reports about the Pakistan High Commissioner's remarks today regarding the Indian state of J&K. They are not in keeping with diplomatic niceties and are tantamount to interference in our internal affairs. Pakistan would be well-advised to effectively address the challenge of terrorism emanating from that country, which has adversely affected peace and stability in the entire neighbourhood as well as Pakistan's relations with other countries,' MEA Spokesperson Gopal Baglay said. Addressing a gathering at an event at the high commission here to mark Pakistan National Day, Basit said the J&K issue must be resolved as per the 'aspirations of Kashmiris'. The Pakistan envoy also asserted that the aspirations of people 'can be suppressed but not quelled and I hope the struggle of the Kashmiris will prove successful'. Kashmir has remained an unresolved issue between the two countries since long causing acrimony on both sides. Meanwhile, the Government of India on Thursday said only issue of dispute between India and Pakistan as far as Jammu and Kashmir is concerned is the 'illegal occupation' of PaK and Gilgit-Baltistan by Pakistan. Union Minister Jitendra Singh reiterated India's demand that Pakistan should vacate 'illegal occupation of these areas.' Singh's sharp remarks came in response to Pakistan High Commissioner Abdul Basit favouring resolution of Kashmir dispute as per the 'aspirations of Kashmiris'. Basit was speaking at an event at the High Commission here today to mark Pakistan's National Day. Talking to reporters outside Parliament, Singh said: 'Today if there is any issue between India and Pakistan on J&K, it is only the illegal occupation by Pakistan, whether it is Pakistan-administered Kashmir (PaK) or Gilgit-Baltistan'. 'How it can be freed from Pakistan's occupation and made a part of the Indian republic...That is the only issue now'. Singh said India's position has been clear for many years now and in 1994, a resolution (on the issue) was also passed in Parliament which all political parties had supported. Basit had said the aspirations of people 'can be suppressed but not quelled and I hope the struggle of the Kashmiris will prove successful'. Kashmir has remained a longstanding unresolved issue between the two countries causing acrimony on both sides.