Overwhelming response to G20 event in J&K rattles Pakistan, China

The G20 Tourism Working Group meeting which was held in Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir concluded on Wednesday (24 May). Both Pakistan and China seem to have been rattled by the overwhelming response to the three-day meeting in Srinagar. The visuals of foreign delegates and dignitaries enjoying Shikara ride and visiting various tourist spots in Srinagar, Jammu and Kashmir bear testimony to the fact that the event was a big success. India sent out a clear message that Pakistan and China, along with a couple other countries choosing to absent themselves from the meeting, did not make any difference. That all went off smoothly and the event saw massive participation of delegates from the G20 member nations defeating the sinister motive of Pakistan to spoil the meeting. That the G20 meeting in Srinagar witnessed massive participation of various UN bodies was a blunt response to Pakistan’s constant seeking of UN intervention.

India’s G20 Chief Coordinator Harsh Vardhan Shringla himself pointed it out, “There was extensive representation with higher participation than previous G20 meetings. Even the UN was represented. At least five UN organisations were represented at the meeting, including the UN Headquarters, UN WTO (World Tourism Organisation), UNEP (United Nations Environment Programme) and ILO (International Labour Organisation). Definitely, the three-day event foiled Pakistan’s agenda to create a false narrative on Jammu and Kashmir. Obviously, the successful organisation of the event is a blunt message also to China which skipped the meeting, calling Jammu and Kashmir as a disputed territory. China’s action actually confirmed the apprehensions that it is working in collusion with Pakistan to create a false impression that all is not well in Jammu and Kashmir. China’s CPEC project in disputed territory PoK to appease Pakistan has already exposed its hypocrisy over sovereignty and territorial integrity of other countries.

A few days ago, misinformation was being circulated by Pakistan-based handles and secessionists against the G20 summit in Kashmir with the false claim that complete shutdown was being observed in Kashmir on Hurriyat’s call. But J&K Counter Disinformation Centre (JKCDC), which is an initiative to counter disinformation and propaganda on Kashmir, busted the false claim. This twitter handle exposed several false propaganda of Pakistan before and during the three-day G20 meeting. The JKCDC initiative shows the comprehensive preparedness of the Indian government to organise the G20 summit in Jammu and Kashmir successfully. India’s strategy was also at the same time to isolate Pakistan and China among the international community members. New Delhi did it perfectly well. Pakistan Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari was on a high pitch opposing the G20 meeting in J&K, but his own countrymen were not convinced. In fact, the starving population of Pakistan wants the government in Islamabad to address their financial issues instead of raking up the Kashmir issue.

Therefore, it was nothing but an indication of his frustration that Zardari termed the meeting as a violation of international law and as an act of suppressing the voice of Kashmiris. Lieutenant General (L-G) of Jammu and Kashmir Manoj Sinha gave a befitting reply to Zardari, “Our neighbours should first take care of the basic necessities of their own people. India has moved forward. A lot of UN representatives are present here. This shows that they want more events to be organized here.” He also said that Kashmir is no longer the land of strikes and stone pelters, alluding to a state of normalcy in the valley. Sinha assertively said that the administration managed to “dismantle” cross-border terrorism in what was a message for Pakistan. Sinha in fact signalled that Bhutto was raising the Kashmir pitch just to divert the attention of Pakistan’s starving people from the main problem which Islamabad failed to address. In another message to Pakistan and China, the L-G said that the union territory is witnessing a new era that has opened limitless possibilities for growth, peace and development. External Affairs Minister Dr Jaishankar had responded earlier to Pakistan saying that Pakistan had no locus standi when it came to the G20 and has no role in Jammu and Kashmir as it is an integral part of India.

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