Islamabad, Sardar Masood Khan, President Azad Jammu and Kashmir, met Ali Amin Khan Gandapur, Federal Minister for Kashmir Affairs and Gilgit Baltistan. The President on this occasion also congratulated him on assuming his new position in the Federal Cabinet.
During the meeting, the President invited the Federal Minister to visit Azad Jammu and Kashmir which the Minister accepted and decided to visit AJK on October 27 which is marked as Black Day in condemnation of India’s illegal military occupation of Jammu and Kashmir.
The AJK President and Federal Minister exchanged views over the grave human rights situation in the Indian Occupied Kashmir, including killings, arbitrary arrests, and other crimes against humanity being committed by the occupation forces.
The President expressed his gratitude to President of Pakistan Dr Arif Alvi, Prime Minister Imran Khan and Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi for taking a firm stand on Kashmir issue, expressing solidarity with the struggling people of Jammu and Kashmir and demanding India to immediately stop violations of human rights in Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK)
The President expressed his hope that Pakistan will continue to keep a strong stance on Jammu and Kashmir. President Khan also discussed with the Minister about AJK related development projects under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC)
The President urged the restoration of Mansehra – Muzaffarabad – Mirpur Express Way Project and construction of Leepa Tunnel to facilitating the people of Leepa Valley and help connect it with the rest of AJK especially during winters. The President also apprised the Federal Minister about the issue of water diversion from River Neelum to River Jehlum and its negative environmental impacts.
President Masood Khan sought Federal government’s intervention and help to resolve issues like Neelum- Jehlum Hydropower Generation and proposed that both WAPDA and AJK government should ink agreements before the start of development work on all future projects to avert complications.
The President told the Minister that AJK Government is planning to construct a 200 kilometers long Tourism Corridor from Saran in Chakar to Devi Gali. The Corridor, the President said, being away from the Line of Control will make it a very safe and secure route for the potential tourists.
The President highly appreciated the decision of the Federal government to construct an airport at Mirpur and urged that the airports of Muzaffarabad and Rawalakot should also be expanded and operationalized. Both the President and Federal Minister Gandapur discussed matters related to the 13th Amendment in the AJK Interim Constitution and underlined the need to develop consensus among all stakeholders on residual issues, while respecting transfer of administrative and financial powers to AJK .
About Gilgit Baltistan (GB), AJK President said people of Jammu and Kashmir consider GB an essential part of Jammu and Kashmir and the Federal government must keep in mind Pakistan’s position that it has taken in United Nations while taking decision about the future of this region, as well as the opinion of the political parties of Azad Kashmir and the true representatives of the people of Indian Occupied Kashmir.