UN Security Council President Joanna Wronecka on Thursday refused to comment on Pakistan's letter to the world body regarding abrogation of Article 370 by India that granted a special status to Jammu and Kashmir. "No comments," Wronecka said when asked for a reaction at a press briefing.
Earlier this month, Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi had written to UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres claiming abrogation of Article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir violated the UNSC resolution. Earlier, Guterres appealed to both India and Pakistan to exercise "maximum restraint" and said he has been following the situation in Jammu and Kashmir with concern.
"The Secretary-General also recalls the 1972 Agreement on bilateral relations between India and Pakistan, also known as the Simla Agreement, which states that the final status of Jammu and Kashmir is to be settled by peaceful means, in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations," said Stephane Dujarric, spokesperson of the UN Secretary-General in a statement.
"The Secretary-General calls on all parties to refrain from taking steps that could affect the status of Jammu and Kashmir," said the statement. Tensions between India and Pakistan spiralled after the Indian Parliament on Tuesday passed a resolution to revoke Article 370 and a bill bifurcating Jammu and Kashmir into two Union Territories.
Rattled by New Delhi's decisions, Islamabad "rejected" the move and said it will exercise "all possible options" to counter the steps. Pakistan on Wednesday decided to downgrade bilateral ties with India and suspend all bilateral trade activities with the neighbouring country in the aftermath of the scrapping of special status to Jammu and Kashmir.
On its part, New Delhi asked Islamabad to review its decision so that normal channels for diplomatic communications are preserved while strictly maintaining that its steps in Jammu and Kashmir are an "entirely internal affair". The international community has urged both countries to exercise restraint and ensure that peace and stability prevail across the Line of Control (LoC).
The Narendra Modi government on August 5 revoked Article 370 which gave special status to Jammu and Kashmir. Both the upper house and the lower house of the Parliament approved the resolution abrogating Article 370 for J&K and a bill to bifurcate the state into two union territories, Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh, with Home Minister Amit Shah saying the controversial provisions were responsible for poverty and lack of development in the state. Ministry of External Affairs also briefed the envoys of the P5 nations -- the US, the UK, China, France and Russia -- about Indian government's decision to scrap Article 370 and bifurcate the state into two union territories.
After normalcy has been restored in Kashmir, a panicky and isolated Pakistan has expelled Indian envoy Ajay Bisaria from the country. As per sources, Pakistan has also decided to not send its High Commissioner-designate who was supposed to take charge in August. In a series of other moves by the neighbouring country, it has decided to downgrade ties with India. It has also decided to suspend bilateral trade with India and review all bilateral arrangements with India. Pakistan has also said that it will take India's internal matter of Kashmir to United Nations, including the Security Council. It has also decided to observe 14 August, its Independence Day in solidarity with 'Kashmiris'. and declared August 15, India's Independence as 'Black Day'. It has on Thursday decided to stop Samjhauta Express - a train service between India's Attari and Pakistan's Lahore.
Addressing the nation first time after abrogation of the Artile 370, PM Modi said that the Centre is working to bring maximum development in Jammua nd Kashmir and Ladhakh that has been ignored for decades. He reiterated the determination to remove terror from J&K. He attacked the 'status quo' mindset of the people that made them think that nothing would change even with time.
"Jammu and Kashmir was least benefitted by Article 370. In fact, Article 370 and 35A forced the state to be involved in corruption, dynastic politics, and sponsored terrorism and all this was carried on by Pakistan through certain agents in India, who worked for personal gains. 42,000 innocent people have lost their lives until now, and it would bring tears to anyone's eyes", he said.