In­dia op­poses move to change Gil­git-baltistan sta­tus

The Northlines - - FRONT PAGE - NL COR­RE­SPON­DENT NEW DELHI, DEC 06

In­dia on Thurs­day voiced strong op­po­si­tion to Pak­istan’s re­ported move to de­clare Gil­git (Pak­istan) as that coun­try’s fifth prov­ince.

“We have said that the en­tire state of Jammu and Kash­mir has been and will re­main a part of In­dia,” Ex­ter­nal Af­fairs Min­istry spokesper­son Raveesh Ku­mar said in re­sponse to a ques­tion at a me­dia brief­ing here.

“Any at­tempt by Pak­istan to change the le­gal sta­tus has no ba­sis what­so­ever,” Ku­mar said.

“We call upon Pak­istan to va­cate all oc­cu­pied ter­ri­to­ries.” Gil­git-baltistan is a part of Jammu and Kash­mir, but Pak­istan il­le­gally oc­cu­pied it af­ter Par­ti­tion in 1947. Is­lam­abad later di­vided the re­gion

into two parts - Pak­istan-oc­cu­pied Kash­mir and Gil­gitBaltistan.

Ac­cord­ing to re­ports, Pak­istan prime min­is­ter Im­ran Khan has ap­proved a pro­posal to al­ter the re­gion's sta­tus to that of an in­terim prov­ince in prin­ci­ple.

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