KHANEWAL-Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mehmood Qureshi inaugurated Khanewal-Abdul Hakim section of Motorway (M-4) at Shamkot on Sunday. He has said that the world has rejected the Indian viewpoint on Kashmir, and that was why not only Pakistanis but also the international human right organisations were expressing solidarity with the people of Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IOJ&K) on Sunday.

He said that the international media also highlighted human rights violations in IOJ&K.

He said that Prime Minister Imran Khan had taken up the Kashmir issue at international level powerfully, adding that the issue was discussed internationally after 54 years.

The foreign minister said that India had illegally occupied Kashmir on October 27, 1947 and the day is observed as a black day across the country on this date every year.

The Indian government had not allowed anyone to visit IOJ&K after revocation of its special status on Aug 5 this year, Shah Mehmood said and asked why permission was not being given to the independent bodies and the media to visit the held Valley if situation was normal there.

He recalled that US Senator Chris Van Hollen was not given permission by the Indian government to visit IOJ&K. The US senator and his delegation, however, visited Azad Kashmir during his visit to Pakistan, he added.

FM Qureshi said that Indian army chief claimed that they had destroyed three ‘launchpads’ in Azad Kashmir. Responding to that propaganda, Pakistan took diplomatic corps from Islamabad including the Indian deputy high commissioner on visit to the site.

He said that the diplomats of 23 countries witnessed the fake claims by India and informed the capitals of their countries through telegram in which they said that Indian propaganda was beyond reality.

He said that Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi sought permission from Pakistan to use Pakistani space for his plane, but the government rejected his request.

The foreign minister said that the opposition could exercise its democratic right of protest, but that should be within the rules and regulations.

He said that protest should not cause damage to the public and private properties, lockdown and blockage of traffic. He said that the government was not afraid of protests and believes in responding to every opposition allegation in a democratic way.

He said that Prime Minister Imran Khan would inaugurate Kartarpur Corridor on Nov 9 to entertain 5,000 Sikh pilgrims daily without visa. He said that the government was planning to attract Buddhist pilgrims in the country also, in the next phase of the policy.

FM Qureshi said that there was complete consensus among all provinces on China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). He said that the country is facing two major economic challenges including unemployment and inflation.

He said that a special development package for Multan city was in progress and Chief Minister Punjab Sardar Usman Buzdar would be invited soon for the purpose. He said that district Khanewal is fertile in agriculture, adding that recent weather changes had affected cotton crop. He said that issues of farmers would be resolved on priority. The foreign minister said that opening of Abdul Hakeem section would help improve business and transportation in the region.

He said that south Punjab would get more benefits after opening of the Multan-Sukkur motorway.

The new road will unlock trade and agribusiness potential for millions of people in Khanewal and adjoining area that will bring many smaller cities and towns into a more efficient transportation loop. It will also provide people better access to basic facilities, including health and education,” said Foreign Minister Makhdoom Shah Mahmood Qureshi.