MUMBAI: Hitting out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi for making a reference of Balochistan in his Independence Day speech, the Congress on Tuesday said it seems that the Centre is ready to sacrifice Kashmir for Balochistan.
Asserting that it was matter of concern that Prime Minister Modi was comparing Kashmir issue with Balochistan, Congress leader Sanjay Nirupam said the former should not take up two issues together.
"The way our Prime Minister is bringing in the Balochistan issue every time he speaks of Kashmir, it is a grave matter of concern, it is indeed frightening. If he talks about Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, I can understand as it's a part of Kashmir," said Nirupam.
"To compare the Kashmir issue with Balochistan is not correct. So, does it mean that the Prime Minister is willing to sacrifice Kashmir for Balochistan's freedom? He Should never rake Kashmir and Balochistan issue together," he added.
Yesterday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi made an oblique reference to the human rights situation in Pakistan's Balochistan province besides Gilgit and other areas of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir in his Independence Day speech from the ramparts of the Red Fort.
"People of Balochistan, Gilgit and PoK have thanked me a lot in past few days, I am grateful to them," Prime Minister Modi said while addressing the nation on the occasion of 70th Independence Day.
"This is the example of our humanitarian approach, but there are some countries who glorify terrorists. To the youth who have taken up guns, I urge them to return to their parents and shun violence," he added.
Gilgit-Baltistan has witnessed massive protests that erupted against a crackdown by Pakistan's security forces in recent weeks and resource rich Balochistan province has seen a crackdown by the Pakistani authorities who say they are quelling an insurgency in the region.
In the past, Pakistan has accused India of supporting the Baloch insurgency.
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