India flays Pakistani SC move on Gilgit-Baltistan

India on Friday summoned a Pakistani diplomat and protested against a recent order of the Supreme Court of Pakistan that brought the region of Gilgit-Baltistan within its ambit. A press note from the External Affairs Ministry said the diplomat was told that the region was, and would remain, an integral part of India. Strong protest “The Deputy High Commissioner of Pakistan was summoned today and a strong protest was lodged on recent order by Supreme Court of Pakistan on the so-called ‘Gilgit-Baltistan’, which is an interference in India’s internal affairs,” the Ministry said. The response came after the Pakistani court said in an order on Thursday that Gilgit-Baltistan came within its domain. It was delivering its comments after the Government of Pakistan ordered constitutional safeguards for the region which previously was not given these safeguards explicitly. Islamabad’s move Pakistan in recent months had taken a series of steps to ensure full constitutional and legal guarantees to the region which was strategically important for the country especially in view of the passage of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor through the region. “India rejected such continued attempts by Pakistan to bring material change in these occupied territories and to camouflage grave human rights violations, exploitation and sufferings of the people living there. Pakistan was asked to immediately vacate all areas under its illegal occupation,” the statement from the Ministry declared indicating that it did not recognise the observations of the Pakistan Supreme Court.

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