INDIA PROTESTS PAKISTAN’S GILGIT-BALTISTAN ORDER

India on May 27, 2018 summoned the Pakistan’s Deputy High Commissioner to protest Islamabad’s order to integrate the region of Gilgit-Baltistan into the federal structure of the country. 

An official press release from the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said the region belongs to India and that Pakistan’s action has no legal support.

“It was clearly conveyed that the entire state of Jammu and Kashmir which also includes the so-called ‘Gilgit-Baltistan’ areas is an integral part of India by virtue of its accession in 1947. Any action to alter the status of any part of the territory under forcible and illegal occupation of Pakistan has no legal basis whatsoever, and is completely unacceptable,” the official press release said. 

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NO AGREEMENT WITH PAKISTAN ON RESOLVING INDUS WATERS DISPUTE

During the meetings, held at Pakistan’s request to discuss issues regarding the Indus Waters Treaty and opportunities within the treaty to seek an amicable resolution, “several procedural options” for resolving the disagreement over the interpretation of the treaty’s provisions were discussed, the Bank said.

“While an agreement on the way forward was not reached at the conclusion of the meetings, the World Bank will continue to work with both countries to resolve the issues in an amicable manner and in line with the treaty provisions,” the Bank said in a statement at the end of the talks.

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PAKISTAN ADMINISTERED KASHMIR, GILGIT, BALTISTAN, GET GREATER AUTONOMY

 Pakistan’s top civil and military leaders have decided to give greater administrative and financial authority to Pakistan administered Kashmir and Gilgit Baltistan, the region through which the Us 50 billion dollar China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) passes.

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PAK DELEGATION IN US TO RAISE ‘VIOLATION’ OF INDUS WATERS TREATY

Pakistan will raise the issue of India’s alleged violation of the Indus Waters Treaty with the World Bank, a media report said today, a day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi inaugurated the 330 MW Kishanganga hydroelectric project in Jammu and Kashmir.

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VOLUNTARY INFORMATION UNDER RTI ACT

On April 3, 2018, the High Court of Jammu and Kashmir directed J&K government to strictly comply with the provision of voluntary disclosure of information by all its departments under J&K RTI Act 2009.      

A division bench of Acting Chief Justice Ramalingam Sudhakar and Justice M K Hanjura asked the Commissioner Secretary General Administration Department to ensure that all the departments disclose information voluntarily under section 4 of the RTI Act so that the people are made aware about the mode of governance and consequent welfare measures for the public. The court also directed the commissioner secretary to report the bench by May 15 about the voluntary disclosure of the information by the various departments.  The court directed additional advocate general M A Beigh to file status report in this regard by the next date of hearing.

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REACHING OUT TO INDIA?

Commenting on British Think Thanks’ commentary, the Daily Times writes editorially that Indo-Pak peace lies at the heart of regional development and confirms that Bajwa Doctrine is fully operational. The newspaper hopes that India would reciprocate though says that Pakistan will likely have to do more to convince New Delhi of sincere commitment. As it is, Indo-Pak militaries are building on the unprecedented good will gesture by General Bajwa.

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DIRECT TALKS BETWEEN NEW DELHI AND PAKISTANI ARMY

Pakistan’s customary hostility towards India aside, there are some contradictory signals that offer a silver line of hope, writes The Times of India editorially. A British think tank commentary has said Pakistan’s army Chief General Qamar Bajwa wants peace and dialogue with New Delhi. As it is, by following a policy of asymmetric warfare against India, it is hurting itself more than India. New Delhi could open channels of communication with Rawalpindi, and that could help Pak generals to feel secure.

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LOOKING FOR A CHANGE

The coming of spring, with its fresh air, fragrance of flowers and vibrant breeze did have a rejuvenating effect on life in Valley, with Tulip Garden and Almond Alcove (Badamvari) – the spring attractions – experiencing a substantial footfall. Spring symbolizes resurgence of life and hope. But for Kashmir this was accompanied by a foreboding. Nature has been quite generous in bestowing tremendous beauty on Kashmir, yet this year Kashmir did not have adequate snowfall, that could have ensured an uninterrupted flow of water in coming seasons. The apprehension of a likely water scarcity made the agriculture experts to harness alternate crops, where much water is not required for irrigation. This applies to the main crop of Kashmir i.e. rice.

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IMPROVING THE RELATIONS

Pakistan’s President asserted that his country wanted peace and good relations with every country. He stressed that Pakistan was pursuing a policy of peace and amity with all its neighbours, writes Subah Kashmir editorially.

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A MATTER OF CONCERN

The J&K Chief Minister, Ms. Mehbooba Mufti has been persistently advocating negotiations with Pakistan and separatists, and according to her, without that, the situation of uncertainty and unrest would not come to end, writes daily Srinagar Times editorially. However, demanding talks does not mean demanding separation of state from the country.

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