New Delhi: Just hours after the Pakistan High Commissioner, Abdul Basit, defended his meeting with the Kashmiri separatists, India hit back saying there were only two stakeholders on Jammu and Kashmir – India and Pakistan, asking the neighbouring country to respect past accords on truce.
“After 1972 and the signing of the Simla Agreement by the Prime Minister of India and Prime Minister of Pakistan, there are only two ‘stakeholders’ on the issue of Jammu and Kashmir – the Union of India and the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. This is a principle which is the bedrock of our bilateral relations. This was reaffirmed in the Lahore Declaration of 1999 between PM Nawaz Sharif and PM Vajpayee,” a statement issued by the Indian Ministry of External Affairs (IMEA) Wednesday said.
India also gave a tough response on why it had permitted such meetings with separatists in the past and had changed track now.
“Pakistan assured us, at the highest level, that they were committed to a peaceful dialogue on the issue of Jammu and Kashmir and would not allow Pakistan or territories under its control to be used for terrorism against us… We know now, particularly after the Mumbai terror attacks and the manner in which Pakistan has pursued subsequent investigations and trials, that this assurance had no meaning and that an approach that is different to the one lay down by the Simla Agreement and Lahore Declaration does not yield results.”INP