Islamabad: A day after India slammed Pakistan's decision to hold general elections in Gilgit-Baltistan on August 18, Islamabad said New Delhi has no locus standi to comment on the polls.
India on Thursday slammed Pakistan for its decision to hold general elections in Gilgit-Baltistan and said such cosmetic exercises are intended to "camouflage" Islamabad's "illegal" occupation of Indian territories.
Last week, Pakistan announced that general elections in Gilgit-Baltistan will be held on August 18.
"We completely reject attempts by Pakistan to bring material changes to the Indian territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh. Such cosmetic exercises are intended to camouflage Pakistan's illegal occupation of Indian territories," Spokesperson in the Ministry of External Affairs Anurag Srivastava said on Thursday.
"We call upon Pakistan to vacate all Indian territories that are under their illegal occupation," he said.
Reacting to India's reaction, Pakistan's Foreign Office said New Delhi has no locus standi to comment on elections in Gilgit-Baltistan.
Pakistan also alleged that India remained in "illegal occupation" of parts of Jammu and Kashmir.
Baseless Indian contentions about elections in Gilgit-Baltistan cannot cover up the violations of human rights in Jammu and Kashmir, the FO statement said.
India also clearly conveyed to Pakistan that the entire union territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh, including the areas of Gilgit and Baltistan, are an integral part of the country.
Be Part of Quality Journalism
Quality journalism takes a lot of time, money and hard work to produce and despite all the hardships we still do it. Our reporters and editors are working overtime in Kashmir and beyond to cover what you care about, break big stories, and expose injustices that can change lives. Today more people are reading Kashmir Observer than ever, but only a handful are paying while advertising revenues are falling fast.