The US State Department has said that America is “closely following the events in the state of Jammu and Kashmir”. The US has, however, noted that India “describes these actions as strictly an internal matter”. The statement by US State Department Spokesperson Morgan Ortagus further said that the US is “concerned about reports of detentions”.
“We are closely following the events in the state of Jammu and Kashmir. We take note of India’s announcement revising the constitutional status of Jammu and Kashmir and India’s plan to split the state into two union territories,” said the statement released by Morgan.
She further said, “We are concerned about reports of detentions and urge respect for individual rights and discussion with those in affected communities.”
In a message to Pakistan, the US State Department has also asked “all parties to maintain peace and stability along the Line of Control”.
This came even as Pakistan continued to cry foul over Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led NDA government’s announcement on abrogation of Article 370, which provided special status to Jammu and Kashmir.
Islamabad had even summoned Indian High Commissioner Ajay Bisaria and registered a strong protest over the development. The neighbour has termed the announcement as “illegal”, demanding an assessment of the prevailing situation in Jammu and Kashmir by the United Nations.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah has, however, asserted that Article 370’s abrogation was essential as it did not allow democracy in Jammu and Kashmir. He described Article 370 as “the root of terror” in the region. Backing him, Prime Minister Modi said that Shah “accurately highlighted the monumental injustices of the past”.
The government has maintained that scrapping Article 370 is essential for complete integration of Jammu and Kashmir into India in the real sense.
As part of precautionary measures ahead of the announcement, the government had moved scores of paramilitary personnel to the state from different parts of the country. The Amarnath Yatra was also called off, with an advisory asking all pilgrims and tourists to leave the state at the earliest.
To maintain law and order situation, former chief ministers Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti were put under preventive detention. An order issued by the Executive Magistrate in Srinagar to Mufti read that ‘there are strong apprehensions of law and order situation and breach of peace and tranquillity in Kashmir.’ “Your activities are likely to cause breach of peace, keeping into consideration your recent activities that may likely lead to serious law and order situation and breach of peace.”