Washington, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan is finding it ‘difficult’ to accept that the Kashmir region is now back on the road to progress and prosperity, Indian envoy to the US Harsh Vardhan Shringla has said. Asserting that since August 5 when the ‘temporary provision of law’ – that is Article 370 was abrogated in Jammu and Kashmir, the envoy said the Government of India is working to build a “more prosperous Kashmir”.
“What Prime Minister Khan finds difficult to accept is that the Kashmir region is now back on the road to progress and prosperity because the Indian government has repealed an anachronistic and temporary provision of law that has hindered development there,” ambassador Shringla wrote in an opinion piece in ‘The New York Times’.
He further wrote: “Under Prime Minister Khan’s watch, the people of Pakistan are reeling under economic depression, with inflation at a five-year high, national debt exceeding gross domestic product and an International Monetary Fund bailout for the 22nd time”.
In this context, sounding rather caustic, Mr Shringla said: “Mr Khan (Pak PM) has, of course, every right to run his own economy into the ground. But his determination to inflict similar damage on the province of a neighboring country must be challenged by the international community”.
He said: “The provision, Article 370 of the Constitution, prevented the Indian government from having any say in the affairs of Jammu and Kashmir except in matters of defense, finance, foreign affairs and communications. This contributed to the province’s struggles: While the rest of India experienced strong social and economic development, Jammu and Kashmir lagged in terms of economic growth, employment, fighting corruption, gender equality, literacy and many other indicators”.