India ‘Dismayed’ at OIC for ‘Unwarranted Comments’ on J&K’s Delimitation Exercise

In a veiled dig at Pakistan, India on Monday slammed the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) asking it to refrain from carrying out its “communal agenda at the behest of one country” over the delimitation exercise in Jammu and Kashmir. New Delhi criticised the group for its “unwarranted” comments over India’s internal affairs.

“We are dismayed that the OIC secretariat has once again made unwarranted comments on the internal affairs of India,” said ministry of external affairs spokesperson Arindam Bagchi, adding, “as in the past, the Government of India categorically rejects the assertions made by the OIC secretariat on the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir which is an integral and inalienable part of India,” he said.

The OIC, a 57-nation intergovernmental organisation, has expressed “deep concern” over the final report submitted by the delimitation commission on May 5. The panel was tasked with redrawing parliamentary and assembly constituencies in Jammu and Kashmir.

The OIC on Monday said India was attempting to redraw electoral boundaries of “Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir, altering the demographic structure of the territory and violating rights of the Kashmiri people”.

In a response to the media over queries about the OIC statement, Bagchi responded saying, “The OIC should refrain from carrying out its communal agenda vis-a-vis India at the behest of one country.”

The OIC also said the J&K delimitation exercise was in “direct contravention” of the relevant UN Security Council resolutions and international law, including the 4th Geneva Convention. It said, “Referring to the long-standing and principled position on the Jammu and Kashmir dispute and relevant decisions of the Islamic Summit and OIC Council of Foreign Ministers, the General Secretariat reiterates its solidarity with the people of Jammu and Kashmir in their just quest for the right of self-determination, in accordance with relevant UN Security Council resolutions. It urges the international community, particularly the UN Security Council to take immediate cognizance of the grave implications of such ‘delimitation’ exercises.”

The delimitation commission on Jammu and Kashmir was formed in March 2020. In its final report, the panel gave six additional assembly seats to the Jammu region and one to Kashmir Valley and brought areas of Rajouri and Poonch under the Anantnag parliamentary seat. Jammu Division will now have 43 assembly seats and Kashmir 47 in the 90-member house. The changes will come into effect from the date to be notified by the central government.

(With PTI inputs)

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