Pakistan on Tuesday rejected Prime Minister Narendra Modi's remarks about Kashmir during a public rally in Gujarat, saying his contention that he has, somehow, "resolved the Kashmir issue", is not only false and misleading but also reflects how oblivious the Indian leadership has become of the ground realities.
Addressing a rally in Anand district in Gujarat on Monday, Prime Minister Modi stated that Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel deftly resolved issues related to the merger of other princely states, but "one person" could not settle the Kashmir issue.
"As I am following the footsteps of Sardar saheb, I have values of the land of Sardar and that was the reason I resolved the problem of Kashmir and paid true tributes to Sardar Patel," Modi said.
Pakistan's Foreign Office "categorically rejected" his remarks and said the Indian Prime Minister's "farcical contention that he has, somehow, 'resolved the Kashmir issue', is not only false and misleading but also reflects how oblivious the Indian leadership has become of the ground realities" in Jammu and Kashmir.
Jammu and Kashmir is an internationally recognised dispute, the resolution of which has been on the agenda of the United Nations since 1948, the FO said in a statement.
"Instead of making delusional statements about having resolved the dispute unilaterally, the Indian leadership must deliver on their commitments to the Kashmiris and to the world and ensure that the people of Kashmir are accorded their inalienable right to self-determination," it said.
Relations between India and Pakistan have been strained over the Kashmir issue and cross-border terrorism emanating from Pakistan. Bilateral ties nosedived after India abrogated Article 370 of the Constitution, revoking the special status of Jammu and Kashmir and bifurcating the State into two Union Territories on August 5, 2019.
Following India's decision, Pakistan downgraded diplomatic ties with New Delhi and expelled the Indian envoy. Trade ties between Pakistan and India have largely been frozen since then.
India has repeatedly told Pakistan that Jammu and Kashmir "was, is and shall forever" remain an integral part of the country. India has said it desires normal neighbourly relations with Pakistan in an environment free of terror, hostility and violence.