Pakistan expresses concern over India's controversial 'maps invoice'

Foreign Office Spokesman Nafees Zakaria
Pakistan has expressed severe concern to the United Nations (UN) Secretary Normal and the President of the UN Safety Council (UNSC) over efforts to move into legislation the controversial Geospatial Info Regulation Invoice which goals to limit geographical depictions of India and disputed Kashmir to those who are government-approved.

Below the draft invoice, anybody distributing a map the Indian authorities deems to be “incorrect” might be responsible for a billion-rupee advantageous and jail time.

International Workplace Spokesman Nafees Zakaria mentioned India’s “incorrect and legally untenable” official map, in violation of UNSC resolutions, shows the disputed territory of Azad Jammu and Kashmir as a part of India.

By the passage of this Invoice, the Indian authorities would be capable to penalise the people and organisations that depict AJK as a disputed territory in accordance with UNSC resolutions, Zakaria mentioned.

New Delhi already imposes tight restrictions on maps but when it turns into legislation, the invoice would impose particular penalties for the primary time.

A letter despatched to the UN on this regard by Pakistan’s everlasting consultant in New York calls on the physique to uphold the us resolutions and urge India to cease acts which can be in violation of worldwide legislation.

Pakistan additionally urged the worldwide group and UN to fulfil their dedication to the individuals of AJK by holding an unbiased and neutral plebiscite underneath UN auspices.

India’s Geospatial Info Regulation Invoice

The invoice, which is up for public session, was revealed on the house ministry’s web site earlier this month and lists penalties, together with a jail time period of as much as seven years and a advantageous of 1 billion rupees.

“No individual shall depict, disseminate, publish or distribute any incorrect or false topographic info of India together with worldwide boundaries by means of Web platforms or on-line providers or in any digital or bodily kind,” the draft Geospatial Info Regulation Invoice says.

The brand new invoice additionally states {that a} licence shall be wanted to “purchase, disseminate, publish or distribute” maps, that means providers like Google Maps and Apple Maps might have to use for permits.

Anybody wanting to make use of India’s geospatial picture outdoors the nation will even need to safe permission.

Final yr, the federal government took the Al Jazeera information channel off air for practically every week, saying it had repeatedly proven incorrect maps of Kashmir.

In 2011 it ordered The Economist journal to cowl up a map of disputed borders in Kashmir. The information weekly positioned white stickers over a diagram of the borders in 28,000 copies on sale in India. Google has additionally run into issues with Indian authorities over maps.

In 2014, the nationwide surveying company filed a grievance in opposition to the corporate for displaying various maps of India on its completely different nation webpages.

The federal government has invited feedback and strategies from the general public on the brand new draft, which is able to seemingly be tabled within the subsequent session of parliament in July.

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