New Delhi: Amid reports that the Nawaz Sharif Government was planning to declare the disputed Gilgit-Balitistan region as the fifth province of the country, New Delhi today reiterated that Jammu and Kashmir was an integral part of India and no illegal occupation could change the fact.
“The position of the Government on Jammu and Kashmir is consistent and well known. The entire State of Jammu and Kashmir was acceded to India in 1947. It has been, is and will always be an integral part of India,” External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Gopal Baglay said replying to a question on media reports about the recommendation of a committee chaired by Sartaj Aziz.
He said he would have nothing direct today on a media report which quote a committee “reportedly chaired by Sartaj Aziz”, but since the matter concerned India’s sovereignty, he would try to underline that any unilateral step by Pakistan to alter the status of Jammu and Kashmir which has been under illegal occupation of that country will have no basis in law and will be completely unacceptable.
Mr Baglay said it will also be a violation of the agreement between the two countries to address all issues bilaterally through peaceful means, which was enshrined in Shimla Agreement of 1972 and reiterated through the Lahore Declaration in 1999.”I must also say that such a step will not camouflage the illegality of Pakistan’s occupation of parts of Jammu and Kashmir and the gravely concerning and serious human rights violations there, as well as denial of democracy to the people there,” he said
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