At Kashmir event, Rajnath Singh’s piercing Gilgit-Baltistan warning to Pakistan

Updated on Oct 27, 2022 04:39 PM IST

Defence minister Rajnath Singh was speaking at a Shaurya Diwas event in Srinagar’s Budgam to commemorate 75 years of the landing of Indian troops at a Budgam airstrip on October 27, 1947, to fight Pakistan-backed tribesmen who tried to take control of the Valley

Defence minister Rajnath Singh said India will consider its objective of all-around development in J&K, and Ladakh after it reaches Gilgit-Baltistan (HT Photo/Waseem Andrabi)
Defence minister Rajnath Singh said India will consider its objective of all-around development in J&K, and Ladakh after it reaches Gilgit-Baltistan (HT Photo/Waseem Andrabi)

SRINAGAR: India’s goal of all-around development in the two union territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh will be achieved after “reaching Gilgit and Baltistan”, parts of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, defence minister Rajnath Singh said on Thursday, amping up the pitch against Pakistan, which he underlined, was committing atrocities against people in the occupied territories and will have to bear the consequences.

“We have just begun our development journey in Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh. This mission will be completed only when we reach the remaining parts such as Gilgit and Baltistan in line with Parliament’s resolution (of 1994 that demanded Pakistan vacate the occupied territories)... And the dream of Acharya Shankaracharya and Vallabhbhai Patel will be fulfilled and the refugees of 1947 will get justice and will get back their land. And the day isn’t far away when this mandate will also get fulfilled,” he said at a Shaurya Diwas event in Budgam on the outskirts of Srinagar.

The event commemorates 75 years of the landing of Indian troops at Kashmir’s airstrip on October 27, 1947, after the then Maharaja Hari Singh signed the instrument of accession.to fight Pakistan-backed tribesmen who tried to take control of the Valley.

In his speech, Rajnath Singh also praised Prime Minister Narendra Modi for scrapping the erstwhile state’s special status under Article 370, which he said enabled the complete integration of Jammu and Kashmir.

“It was the beginning of a new dawn in J&K… We have been waiting for the integration of J&K for the last seven decades,” Singh said, describing the abrogation of Article 370 as a step that ends discrimination against the people of the two union territories.

The defence minister also accused Pakistan of depriving the people of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir of depriving people of their basic rights and human rights violations.

“I want to ask Pakistan, what rights have been given to people who live in the regions that are under its forcible occupation,” he said, mounting a sharp attack on the neighbouring country that has been training, arming and funding terrorism in the region.

Singh said everyone was aware of how Pakistan, which often sheds crocodile tears for Kashmiri people, treated people in the occupied territories. “Whatever Pakistan is doing now in PoK, it will reap the consequences in the times to come.”

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