Strongly condemning the destruction of Buddhist symbols in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, India sought access to experts in the region to preserve its cultural heritage, claiming it as part of the former state of Jammu and Kashmir as the national capital.
Social media was flooded with images depicting the decay and destruction of several ancient Buddhist paintings and rock carvings.
The Modi-led NDA government once again asked Islamabad to evacuate illegally occupied Indian territory after reports of vandalism of Buddhist rock carvings in the Gilgit-Baltistan region of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir in 700 AD.
Foreign Ministry official spokesperson Anurag Srivastava said it was a matter of “grave concern” in response to media reports of reports of vandalism, degradation and destruction of Buddhist archeological sites in Pakistan’s Jammu and Kashmir.
He said, “Buddhist symbols are being destroyed and religious and cultural rights and freedoms in Indian territories under illegal occupation of Pakistan are being absolved. This unforgettable activity of this nature is highly reprehensible, showing contempt for ancient civilization and cultural heritage.”
“The government has sought the immediate access of experts to the region to restore and preserve this invaluable archeological heritage,” he said.
Srivastava said the government had conveyed its concerns to Pakistan and called on the Imran Khan government to immediately evacuate all illegally occupied territories and stop hating the political, economic and cultural rights of the people living there.
(With agency input)