New Delhi: For the second time after Article 370 was abrogated stipping erstwhile state of Jammu and Kashmir of its special status, a delegation of foreign diplomats is visiting the newly created Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir in a guided tour on Thursday and Friday.

 

Sixteen Envoys mostly from Latin America and African countries Vietnam, South Korea, Uzbekistan, Guyana, Brazil, Nigeria, Niger, Argentina Philippines, Norway, Morocco, Maldives, Fiji, Togo, Bangladesh, Peru and the US will be coming to India, meet civil society members in J&K. On Thursday, they will visit Srinagar and then Jammu and meet Lt Governor GC Murmu.

The proposed tour has already run into trouble over the withdrawal of EU MPs from the tour. A delegation of 23 EU MPs came to visit Kashmir in October. The Home ministry later said that it was a private visit. The government didn’t invite them. This time, EU members reportedly withdrew themselves from the visit. Reports claimed that they wanted to tour on their own, and to meet local political leaders under detention. Dismissing such reports as “unfounded” and “mischievous”, Centre sources said that EU diplomats are not being accommodated this time as they wanted to visit in a group, which is not possible due to restrictions in numbers. EU members will take the tour at a later date.

Internet broadband is restored in Kashmir in government hospitals. SMS services have been restored from January 1, 2020.

The detention of political leaders and activists has run into the sixth month this January. The government has organised the two-day visit of the envoys to allay concerns which have reached global platforms.