Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Wednesday termed India’s move to revoke special status to Jammu and Kashmir a “strategic blunder” and said that the move will cost New Delhi “heavily”.
Khan made the comments while addressing a special session of the “Azad Jammu and Kashmir” Legislative Assembly in Muzaffarabad as Pakistan marked its Independence Day “in solidarity with Kashmiris”.
“I believe it is a (huge) strategic blunder by Modi. It will cost Modi and his BJP government heavily. I consider it a big miscalculation by Modi. He has played his final card,” the Khan said.
Vowing to take the Kashmir cause forward, the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) chief said: “I’ll become the voice for Kashmir. I will be Kashmir’s ambassador.”
Imran Khan said it was a challenging task to draw attention of world leaders to the “human rights violations in occupied Kashmir”, Geo News reported.
“But now, the Kashmir issue is under the spotlight of (world media). By (clamping down further) on occupied Kashmir, Modi has in fact helped to internationalize the dispute,” said the cricketer-turned-politician.
The Pakistan government earlier decided to observe their Independence Day in solidarity with “the brave Kashmiris and their just struggle for their right of self-determination”.
Meanwhile, Pakistan is observing today — the day in 1947 on which India got independence from the British rule — as black day. Flags will be flown half-mast in government and private institutions across Pakistan.
The decision to dedicate Independence Day to the Kashmiris and their “just struggle for their right of self-determination” was made during a National Security Committee (NSC) meeting, two days after India revoked Article 370 granting special status to Jammu and Kashmir.
Earlier last week, a day after the Indian government abrogated Article 370, that gave special status to Jammu and Kashmir, Imran Khan had warned of “Pulwama-like incidents to happen again”.
“I can already predict this will happen. They will attempt to place the blame on us again. They may strike us again, and we will strike back,” Khan had said while addressing the Pakistan Parliament.
“What will happen then? They will attack us and we will respond and the war can go both ways… But if we fight a war till we shed the last drop of our blood, who will win that war? No one will win it and it will have grievous consequences for the entire world. This is not nuclear blackmail,” he added.
Meanwhile, India has made it clear that the recent developments pertaining to Article 370 were “entirely the internal affair of India”.
“The Constitution of India was, is and will always be a sovereign matter. Seeking to interfere in that jurisdiction by invoking an alarmist vision of the region will never succeed,” it firmly stated.