NEW DELHI: The Narendra Modi Government on Friday asked Pakistan to stop meddling in the internal matters of the country and urged it to reconsider its decision to suspend the Samjhauta and Thar Express train services between the two countries over New Delhi's recent move to scrap Article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir.
Addressing a press briefing, MEA spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said, "It is important to understand that the action taken by Pakistan is unilateral...We have urged them to reconsider the decision...Pakistan is doing this to present a very alarming situation but that is not the case."
''It is time for Pakistan to accept the reality and stop interfering in internal affairs of other countries,'' the MEA spokesperson said.
Raveesh Kumar, MEA: It is time for Pakistan to accept the reality and stop interfering in internal affairs of other countries. pic.twitter.com/wjqI4azvOB
— ANI (@ANI) August 9, 2019
Commenting on Pakistan's move to suspend Samjhauta and Thar Express train services between the two countries, the MEA spokesperson said, ''It is time for Pakistan to accept the reality and stop interfering in internal affairs of other countries.''
He said Pakistan is upset over the revocation of special status for Kashmir and the massive development work that is planned to be brought into J&K now, as Islamabad "will not be able to incite terrorism or mislead the people of Kashmir anymore".
He stressed that "all matters relating to J&K are an internal matter, and a sovereign matter concerning India. We want Pakistan to understand this."
Raveesh Kumar also clarified that the Pakistani airspace is not closed and only re-routing has been done while maintaining that the airspace is operational.
The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) also issued a statement in which it said, ''Centre's recent move on Jammu and Kashmir is an entirely internal affair".
The government also categorically rejected Pakistan's ''unilateral'' move to downgrade diplomatic ties and asked Islamabad to review them so that normal channels for diplomatic communications are preserved.
The statement issued by the MEA said, ''The Constitution of India was, is and will always be a sovereign matter. Seeking to interfere in that jurisdiction by invoking an alarmist vision of the region will never succeed."
"The Government of India regrets the steps announced by Pakistan yesterday and would urge that country to review them so that normal channels for diplomatic communications are preserved," the Ministry said.
The MEA statement said, "The intention behind these (Pakistan's) measures is obviously to present an alarming picture to the world of our bilateral ties. The reasons cited by Pakistan are not supported by facts on the ground."
The Ministry outlined that India`s decisions are driven by a commitment to extending to Jammu and Kashmir opportunities for development that were earlier denied by a temporary provision in the Constitution.
"Its impact would also result in the removal of gender and socio-economic discrimination. It is also expected to result in an upswing of economic activity and improvement in the livelihood prospects of all people of Jammu and Kashmir," the statement said.
"It is not surprising that such developmental initiatives that could address any disaffection in Jammu and Kashmir should be negatively perceived in Pakistan, which has utilized such sentiments to justify its cross-border terrorism," the Ministry added.
It may be recalled that after a meeting of the National Security Council chaired by Prime Minister Imran Khan, Pakistan had decided to downgrade diplomatic ties with India in response to New Delhi's move to scrap the special status of J&K.
Islamabad also asked India to withdraw its High Commissioner to Pakistan and also decided not to send its High Commissioner-designate to New Delhi.
It also partially shut off its airspace and suspended bilateral trade with India.
Pakistan`s decision came after New Delhi abrogated Article 370 stripping Jammu and Kashmir of its special status along with bifurcating the state into two Union Territories--Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh.