January 2017 News

Third Party Has No Role In Kashmir Row: India To UK

19 January 2017
Times of India

New Delhi: India brushed aside a debate in UK Parliament on the Kashmir issue saying no third party had any role to play in resolving the dispute. MEA said it was aware of the development but added all issues between the two countries (India and Pakistan) can only be resolved bilaterally. 'Our position on the issue of Jammu & Kashmir is very clear that all issues between India and Pakistan are to be resolved bilaterally and peacefully in accordance with the Simla Agreement and Lahore Declaration,' said MEA spokesperson Vikas Swarup. 'There is no room for third party,' he added. The British MPs warned against any escalation of violence in Kashmir. UK Parliament held a debate on Kashmir, led by David Nuttall (Conservative) along with Nusrat Ghani (Conservative), Robert Flello (Labour) and Fiona Mactaggart (Labour). This debate was determined by the Backbench Business Committee following an application from David Nuttall. The motion of the debate said, 'That this House notes the escalation in violence and breaches of international human rights on the Indian side of the Line of Control in Kashmir; calls on the government to raise the matter at the United Nations; and further calls on the government to encourage Pakistan and India to commence peace negotiations to establish a long term solution on the future governance of Kashmir based on the rights of the Kashmiri people to determine their own future in accordance with the provisions of UN Security Council resolutions.' However, Conservative MP from Harrow East Bob Blackman and Labour MP from Ealing Southall Virendra Sharma spoke against the motion. They also spoke forcefully on the ethnic cleansing of Kashmiri Pandits. 'It is not Britain's role to intervene in the internal politics of any sovereign nation. But we stand ready to help facilitate and alleviate the suffering of the innocent people of Ladakh, Jammu & Kashmir,' said Bob Blackman, who has for long campaigned for the rights of Kashmiri Pandits forced to flee the region. 'Today marks the terrible day back in 1990 when Kashmiri Hindus were forced from their homes. I have been speaking on this issue for 27 years. The whole of Ladakh, Jammu & Kashmir is an integral part of India and both India and Pakistan must abide by the UN resolution,' said Blackman, who was among the MPs speaking in the debate. The debate came a day after mourning was observed by the Kashmiri Pandits Cultural Society in a committee room of the House of Commons. The group called for 'justice' for the nearly 700,000 Kashmiri Pandits forced to flee their homes in the Kashmir Valley.