Letter dated 20 August 1948, from the Prime Minister of India to the Chairman of the UNCIP concerning Northern Territories

11 Jan 2016 16:11:39

Letter dated 20 August 1948, from the Prime Minister of India to the Chairman of the UNCIP concerning Northern Territories

( S/1109, Para 80)

Excellency,

You will recall that in our interview with the Commission on the 17th August, I dealt at some length with position of sparsely populated and mountainous region of the Jammu Kashmir State in the north. The authority of the Government of Jammu and Kashmir over the region as a whole has not been challenged or disturbed, except by roving bands of hostiles, or in some places like Skardu which have been occupied by irregulars or Pakistan troops. The Commission’s resolution, as you agreed in the course of our interview on the 18th, does not deal with problem of administrations or defence in this large area. We desire that, after Pakistan troops and irregulars have withdrawn from the territory, the responsibility for administration of the evacuated areas should revert to the Government of Jammu Kashmir and that for defence to us. (The only exception that we should be prepared to accept would be Gilgit). We must be free to maintain Garrisons at selected points in this area for the dual purpose of preventing the incursions of tribesmen, who obey no authority, and to guard the main trade routes from the State into Central Asia.

Accept, Excellency, etc.

(Sd.) Jawaharlal Nehru

Prime Minister of India

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