India has conveyed its "serious concern" to Saudi Arabia for a recently issued banknote with an "incorrect depiction of India's external territorial boundaries", the foreign ministry said on Thursday. The note had appeared to exclude Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh from India.
"The note was issued by Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority on October 24 to mark the occasion of Saudi presidency of the G20," the Ministry of External Affairs said at a briefing.
"We have conveyed our serious concern to Saudi Arabia, both through their Ambassador in New Delhi as well as in Riyadh, for this gross misrepresentation of India's external territorial boundaries on an official and legal banknote of Saudi Arabia and asked the Saudi side for taking urgent corrective steps in this regard," it said.
"I would like to further reiterate that entire Union Territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh are integral parts of India," the ministry spokesperson said.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has tried to court Saudi Arabia in recent years, strengthening trade ties and with broader diplomatic overtures in efforts to put pressure on Pakistan, one of the Arab nation's closest allies.
Last year, he broke with government protocol to personally welcome Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman at the New Delhi airport.
The gesture was hailed as "a new chapter in bilateral relations" by the then foreign ministry spokesperson who tweeted a photograph of the pair warmly clasping hands by the steps of the prince's plane.
During a visit later that year, PM Modi met King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud and the Crown Prince and signed a slew of energy deals. India, the world's third-biggest oil consumer, is a key client of Saudi Arabia.