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Pakistan nervous over repeal of Article 370, should stop interfering in internal affairs: India

ANI  |  Politics 

Pakistan was nervous in the wake of decisions to repeal Article 370 as it feels development activities will nullify its justification for cross-border terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir, India said on Friday while asserted that it was time for Islamabad to accept reality and stop interfering in internal affairs of other countries.

"Frankly, there is a feeling that Pakistan is nervous. They feel that development activities and overall welfare of people of Jammu and Kashmir will nullify their justification for cross-border terrorism. They will not be able to incite separatist activities. They will not be able to support terrorism. They will not be able to mislead people," External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said at a media briefing here.

He was answering a volley of questions over Pakistan's actions following India's parliament scraping special status of Jammu and Kashmir and reorganising it into two union territories.

Kumar said Pakistan's action of downgrading ties was unilateral and the impression it wanted to create was of an "alarming picture" of bilateral relations.

"Whether it is Samjhauta Express, trade relations, asking us to withdraw High Commissioner, it has been done without consulting us. Our sense is that whatever is being done by Pakistan is to present a very alarming picture of bilateral relations that something big is going to happen which of course is not the case," he said.

India has urged Pakistan to reconsider those decisions and has regretted the steps they have announced.

Kumar said India has also mentioned that all developments pertaining to Article 370 were entirely the internal affairs of India.

"They relate to the Constitution, which is a sovereign matter. It is time for Pakistan to accept the reality and stop interfering in internal affairs of other countries," he said.

Answering a query, he said Pakistani airspace is not closed, only re-routing has been done. He said Pakistan's efforts to link "unrelated issues into the sovereign matter of India had not succeeded anywhere".

Kumar said India has briefed a number of foreign governments and international organisations and explained its position.

"Whatever we have done completely relates to internal affairs of India," he said.

Referring to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's address to the nation, he said he clearly articulated the vision of Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh.

To a query about Pakistan approaching the United Nations Security Council, Kumar said: "As and when Pakistan decides to internationalise it, we will decide what steps need to be taken".

Answering a query related to the Taliban, Kumar said he would not like to react to individual statements.

"But it is clear that what they tried to project that there is a linkage between what has happened here and something which is completely unrelated. I think this is not something that has not worked," he said.

He said Pakistan would like to project "a panic situation, war-like situation" but that was not the case and the international community also did not think so.

"It is a definite ploy to kind of deflect the attention in a different manner. It is time for Pakistan to see a new reality and stop interfering in what happens in a neighbouring country," he said.

On the response of the Islamic world, he said there has been an enhanced engagement with the Islamic world in recent years with the Prime Minister himself leading it.

"The relationship has blossomed, it has become multi-dimensional, it has moved away from diaspora centric relationship to matters such as trade and investment, energy security and defence," he said.

He said there has been a greater understanding in the countries about India's position and the rhetoric of Pakistan has been seen through.

On information warfare by Pakistan, he said generations of people in that country have been fed on a certain narrative and that narrative is supported sometimes by the official propaganda machine.

"My sense is that on many counts, people see through those designs," he said.

He said if there were handles on social media pushing out narratives that promoted violence it will be taken into account.

Replying to a query about Samjhauta Express, he said its stoppage was unfortunate and intended to feed "the same narrative that the relations between India and Pakistan have reached an alarming stage."

Kumar said Pakistan has been asked to provide adequate security to Indian mission staff.

He said the safety of people of Jammu and Kashmir was that of the administration.

"They are being looked after well. We already see a sense of calm and normalcy. All newspapers are being published without any disruption. There has been no incidence of violence. Food supply has not been affected. Hospitals are operating normally," he said.

Answering a query on Eid celebrations, he said the Prime Minister has indicated that conditions will be relaxed.

"I am taking inference from there. It all depends on how the law and order situation evolves. We are very hopeful," he said.

The Parliament earlier this week passed a Bill to reorganise Jammu and Kashmir into two Union Territories and adopted a resolution for the repeal of Article 370.

Kumar noted that India has highlighted how the decision will result in the removal of social and gender inequity, support democracy at the grassroots level, bring good governance and transparency and improve livelihood prospects of all people in Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Fri, August 09 2019. 21:44 IST