Modi government adopting double standards by allowing envoys to visit J&K, but not Indian politicians: Jairam Ramesh

Congress' attack on the government came hours after US Ambassador to India Kenneth Juster and envoys from 15 other countries arrived in Srinagar on a two-day visit to Jammu and Kashmir.

Published: 09th January 2020 04:47 PM  |   Last Updated: 09th January 2020 08:23 PM   |  A+A-

Congress leader Jairam Ramesh (File photo | PTI)

Congress leader Jairam Ramesh (File photo | PTI)

By PTI

NEW DELHI: The Congress on Thursday accused the government of "adopting double standards" by organising "guided tours" to Jammu and Kashmir for foreign envoys, but not allowing Indian politicians to visit there.

The party launched a broadside against the government hours after envoys from 15 countries including United States Ambassador to India Kenneth Juster arrived in Srinagar on a two-day visit to Jammu and Kashmir, the first by diplomats since August last year when the then state's special status was revoked and it was downsized to two union territories.

"The government is adopting double standards by allowing foreign envoys to visit Jammu and Kashmir, but not Indian politicians," senior Congress leader Jairam Ramesh said at a press conference.

He, however, clarified that the Congress party was not opposed to such a visit, but Indian politicians should also be allowed to visit there.

Ramesh said this was the second such attempt by the government, after the one planned for delegates of EU Parliamentarians on October 29 last year.

At that time after facing criticism, the government had to say that it was an informal visit and not an official one, the Congress leader said.

"We do not oppose this visit of foreign envoys. But when our own politicians are not allowed to go to Jammu and Kashmir to meet people there, what is the purpose of taking foreign envoys there?" he posed.

Ramesh said three former chief ministers of Jammu and Kashmir were still under house arrest and one ex-CM, who was also the leader of opposition in the Rajya Sabha -- Ghulam Nabi Azad -- had to seek the permission from the Supreme Court to visit the Union territory.

When a Parliamentary delegation, opposition leaders, former Congress president and CPI(M) general secretary, could not go to Jammu and Kashmir, then what was the purpose of taking foreign envoys there, Ramesh asked.

"We demand that the government allows unfettered access to Jammu and Kashmir to all politicians and not resort to guided tours for envoys," he said.

Ramesh said the Congress wants that meaningful political activities start in Jammu and Kashmir immediately and "political tourism" for foreign envoys stops.

"It is important to stop such guided tours."

"In the last five months, no meaningful political activity has taken place in Jammu and Kashmir. The Congress party wants that meaningful political activities start in Jammu and Kashmir immediately. Political tourism of taking envoys to Jammu and Kashmir should stop," Ramesh said.

Stay up to date on all the latest Nation news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)

Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp