In yet another embarassment for India, US Congress seek answers from Indian Ambassador over Occupied Kashmir conflict


WASHINGTON - In yet another embarassment for India, US Congress seek answers from Indian Ambassador over Occupied Kashmir conflict.

The United States (US) congress has demanded answers from Harsh Vardhan Shringla, the Indian Ambassador to the US, regarding the current crisis in Indian-occupied Kashmir (IoK)

Six members of the US Congress have written a letter to the ambassador asking follow-up questions to a congressional briefing on Kashmir. On October 16, House Foreign Affairs Committee was briefed by Shringla, who updated them about the situation in IoK.

The Congress members noted that the update by Shringla is different to what their constituents have painted a picture of the region.

“We believe true transparency can only be achieved when journalists and members of congress are allowed free access to the region. We encourage India to open Jammu and Kashmir to both domestic and foreign journalists and other international visitors in the interest of open and increased communication," the congress members urged.

The members have raised several questions regarding the IoK. In their letter, the members said that they have heard that Indian government is using rubber bullets on protesters, which has caused the demonstrators to be blind.

“Can you confirm whether there are known cases of protesters being blinded by rubber bullets, including the number of children? Are rubber bullets still being used for crowd control? What is the Indian government doing to ensure rights of peaceful protesters," the members wrote.

They have raised concern on whether the internet and landline services have been restored in the region and if not when will the Indian government restore the connections.

They have also questioned how many people have been detained since August 5 and whether the detained includes minors.

Speaking about the curfew imposed in occupied Kashmir, the congress members asked, “What is the government's plan to allow residents to return to inhibited movement. When can we expect that?"

They members also questioned the ban on foreign journalists from visiting the valley and have demanded answers as to when will the government allow journalists to visit.