An Indian High Commission official in Pakistan staged a walkout of a SAARC meeting over the presence of a minister from Pakistan-administered Kashmir (PaK) at the event, according to source in a PTI report.
According to the report, diplomat Shubham Singh walked out to register India’s protest over the presence of PaK minister Chaudhary Muhammad Saeed at the SAARC Chambers of Commerce and Industry meeting on the SAARC Charter Day in Islamabad on Sunday.
India’s political stance regards Kashmir as an ‘integral’ part of it and does not recognise any minister for PaK.
In 2016, India had pulled out of the 19th SAARC summit that was to be held in Islamabad after an attack on an Indian Army camp in Uri left more than a dozen army men dead. The summit was called off after Bangladesh, Bhutan and Afghanistan also declined to attend.
The SAARC meeting is the first since that incident.
India had earlier also called off the foreign minister-level talks with Pakistan on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in New York in September after the killing of policemen in Jammu and Kashmir and the release of a postage stamp by Pakistan commemorating Hizbul Mujahideen commander Burhan Wani, who was killed in the summer of 2016, leading to widespread uproar in Kashmir.
(With inputs from PTI)