New Delhi: Expressing concern over the restrictions in Jammu and Kashmir since August 5, the European Union (EU) on Tuesday urged New Delhi to restore normalcy in the newly formed union territory.
Asserting that the decision has revoked “fundamental freedom” of the people of Kashmir, a new envoy, Ugo Astuto, of the EU told media reporters that their stand on the situation remains the same and India should restore communication network and all other essential services at the soonest to bring back peace in the Valley.
Astuto also said that Pakistan must take action against terrorists and terror groups and that it should comply with steps recommended by anti-terror watchdog Financial Action Task Force (FATF) in containing terrorism in the country.
“We did convey our concerns about the situation on the ground, especially restrictions on a fundamental freedom. It is crucial that freedom of movement and means of communication are restored as well as the essential services,” Ugo Astuto told reporters, as quoted by PTI.
“We want the government to take steps to restore normalcy in the region…we have an understanding about India’s security concerns. Our position has been consistent and unchanged,” he added.
It must be noted that after the Centre’s decision to reorganise Jammu and Kashmir and scrap Article 375, large parts of the Valley have been reeling under the restrictions. Internet and mobile phone networks and landline networks were cut off on August 6 to contain violence, while many key political leaders, as well as activists and businessmen, were put under house arrest.
Earlier today, during the Lok Sabha session, Union Home Minister Amit Shah alleged that the situation in Jammu & Kashmir is “normal” and not a single death due to police firing was reported after the abrogation of Article 370 from the erstwhile state.
“As far as the situation in Jammu and Kashmir is concerned, the situation is completely normal. But, I cannot normalise the situation of Congress. Because they had said that there will be a bloodbath after the abrogation of Article 370 and the government would not be able to lift curfew from there for years. But, nothing happened,” Shah said in response to Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury’s query.
Meanwhile, Astuto also commented on the ongoing heated debate over Citizenship Amendment Bill 2019 that was passed in the Lok Sabha on Monday midnight. “We share this idea and hope it would be upheld,” he said adding that it goes against the idea of equality enshrined upon the Indian Constitution.