Rajnath Singh, the defence minister, stepped up the rhetoric against Pakistan on Thursday, emphasising that it was committing atrocities against people in the occupied territories and would suffer the consequences. He said that India’s goal of comprehensive development in the two union territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh will be achieved after “reaching Gilgit and Baltistan,” portions of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.
“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,” On the outskirts of Srinagar in Budgam, at a Shaurya Diwas celebration, he stated.
The occasion marks the arrival of Indian forces in Kashmir on October 27, 1947—75 years after the then-Maharaja Hari Singh signed the instrument of accession—to combat tribesmen supported by Pakistan who attempted to seize control of the Valley.
The defence minister also accused Pakistan of denying people in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir of their fundamental rights and of violating human rights. Everyone, according to Singh, is aware of how Pakistan, which frequently pours crocodile tears for Kashmiri people, treats those living in the occupied regions.