India was irked over Pakistan's latest response on Gilgit Baltistan and Occupied Kashmir

India was irked over Pakistan's latest response on Gilgit Baltistan and Occupied Kashmir

ISLAMABAD - India was irked over Pakistan as it today again rejected as preposterous and without any legal basis objection to Islamabad's efforts towards incorporating the disputed Gilgit-Baltistan region as its fifth province.

Pakistan's Cabinet on May 21 approved Gilgit-Baltistan Order 2018. Civil rights groups in Pakistan have criticised the order.

India says the region belongs to it and that Pakistan's action has no legal support. Foreign Office spokesman Mohammad Faisal, addressing his weekly briefing, rejected India's objection to recent reform in Gilgit-Baltistan (GB) region as preposterous and without any legal basis.

From this podium, I challenge India to let the United Nations carry out a free and fair plebiscite in Jammu & Kashmir, as envisaged in the UNSC Resolutions, so that the Kashmiris are able to decide their future as per their aspirations. Pakistan is confident that Jammu & Kashmir would side with Pakistan, he claimed.

Faisal also said that Pakistan maintained its consistent position that only through dialogue, issues can be resolved between the two countries. It is India that has imposed conditionalities on the dialogue process, he said.

He also accused India of pushing South Asia into a "vicious arms race" by its military buildup coupled with "hegemonic designs".He also warned of a befitting response in case of any misadventure by India.

"Pakistan wants to live in peace, however, if aggression is thrust upon us, it would be duly punished. Let there be no mistake. We expect maturity from India in this regard, he said.

External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj last month had insisted that her government has not said no to comprehensive dialogue with Pakistan but that terror and talks could not go together.