New Delhi: After the Pakistan cabinet approved a new political map which includes territories of Jammu & Kashmir and parts of Gujarat and Ladakh, India ridiculed Pakistan’s move and called it “an exercise in political absurdity”, on Tuesday.
The new political map claimed these territories as belonged to Pakistan. It also claimed Junagadh, Manavadar and Sir Creek in Gujarat as part of Pakistan.
“We have seen a so-called political map of Pakistan that has been released by Prime Minister Imran Khan. This is an exercise in political absurdity, laying untenable claims to territories in the Indian state of Gujarat and our Union territories of Jammu & Kashmir and of Ladakh,” the external affairs ministry said in a statement.
“These ridiculous assertions have neither legal validity nor international credibility,” it said.
“In fact, this new effort only confirms reality of Pakistan’s obsession with territorial aggrandizement supported by cross-border terrorism,” the statement added.
Pakistan launched the map just a day before the one-year anniversary of the Indian government's decision to revoke Article 370 which gave special powers to the state of Jammu & Kashmir as well as the bifurcation of the state into two Union territories.
Unveiling the new map on Tuesday, the Pakistani prime minister, Imran Khan, said it “represents the ambition of the people of Pakistan.”
Releasing the maps, Khan, in a new conference, said, “Today, we are introducing the new map of Pakistan before the world. This new map has been endorsed by Pakistan's cabinet, opposition and the Kashmiri leadership. This map is as per the aspirations of the entire nation as well as the people of Kashmir.”
“This map nullifies the illegal step that India took on August 5 last year with regards to Kashmir. Starting today, this will be the official map of Pakistan,” he added.
Until now, Pakistan has resisted calling the all areas of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (POK) as a part of its territory officially. While it treats Gilgit-Baltistan as its territory, it calls the rest “Azad Kashmir”.