The Indian National Congress party was forced to issue a clarification after its United Kingdom (UK) chapter discussed Kashmir with Labour Party chief Jeremy Corbyn.
Corbyn had on Wednesday said that he met members of the Congress party’s UK chapter and discussed the “human rights situation” in Kashmir, calling for an end to “the cycle of violence and fear.”
The tweet prompted the ruling BJP to attack the Congress, saying that the opposition party owed an explanation to the country about “what its leaders are telling foreign leaders about India.”
In response, senior Congress leader Anand Sharma today issued a clarification saying that Jammu & Kashmir is “purely India’s internal matter” and the delegation that met Corbyn did not have the mandate to speak on the issue.
“We are shocked by this misrepresentation and any unauthorised statement that has been made on behalf of the Congress party… The delegation which met, for that matter any chapter of the IOC, has neither a mandate nor any authorisation to speak on any matter which pertains to policies or India’s domestic issues. They are supposed to be only confined to the Indian diaspora,” said Sharma.
Corbyn has been under pressure from Indian diaspora groups in Britain since the Labour Party passed a resolution against the Indian government’s decision to revoke Article 370 and withdraw the special status accorded to J&K.
The Indian Overseas Congress UK also issued a clarification saying that the meeting with Corbyn was to reiterate that outside intervention on J&K will not be entertained. It also accused the BJP of spreading “malicious” statements.