New Delhi: Pakistan on Monday condemned the Narendra Modi government’s move to repeal Article 370, which grant special status to the state of Jammu and Kashmir, saying no “unilateral step” could change the state’s disputed status.
In a statement by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Pakistan said J&K’s disputed status was enshrined in the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) resolutions and no unilateral decision by India would be “acceptable to the people of Jammu & Kashmir and Pakistan”.
“As the party to this international dispute, Pakistan will exercise all possible options to counter the illegal steps,” the statement read, adding: “Pakistan reaffirms its abiding commitment to the Kashmir cause and its political, diplomatic and moral support to the people of Occupied Jammu and Kashmir for realisation of their inalienable right to self-determination.”
Meanwhile, the neighbour has decided to hold a joint session of Parliament on Tuesday to discuss India’s move.
In an announcement with massive repercussions for Jammu and Kashmir, Home Minister Amit Shah announced in Rajya Sabha that the government has decided to repeal Article 370 of the Constitution which grants special status to J&K. The government has also decided to bifurcate the state into two Union territories — Jammu and Kashmir, which will have a legislature, and Ladakh, which will be without a legislature.
Shah’s announcement was immediately followed by massive uproar in the Upper House with opposition MPs protesting in the Well of the House. Back in the Valley, three of Jammu and Kashmir’s most prominent politicians — Mehbooba Mufti, Omar Abdullah and Sajad Lone are under house arrest amid a massive security-built up in the state. Internet services and mobile services have been suspended in several places and all public gatherings are banned in Srinagar district as section 144 was imposed from midnight.