The US House Foreign Affairs Committee has urged India to lift the restrictions in Kashmir. The committee has noted that the communication blockade could have a devastating impact on the lives and welfare of Kashmiris.

In a tweet, the House Foreign Affairs Committee on Monday said it is time for India to give Kashmiris equal opportunities and rights as other Indian citizens. The committee tweeted: India’s communication blackout in Kashmir is having a devastating impact on the lives and welfare of everyday Kashmiris. It’s time for India to lift these restrictions and afford Kashmiris the same rights and privileges as any other Indian citizen.

The US Congressman Brad Sherman, who is chairing the meeting on October 22, has said the committee will hear the human rights in Kashmir and other South Asia parts. The latest development comes just after US Senator Chris Van Hollen was not allowed by the Centre to visit Kashmir.

Kashmir is reeling under strict restrictions since Centre abrogated Article 370 of the constitution and bifurcated the state into two Union territories. The top mainstream leadership in the valley including former chief ministers – Farooq Abdullah, Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti have been detained in several sub jails across the state.

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Meanwhile, the state administration on Monday has lifted a ban on tourists. Governor Satya Pal Malik has directed state officials to urge tourists to visit the valley from Thursday.

Earlier, the state administration had asked the tourists to cut short their visit to Kashmir. it also called off the Amarnath yatra which had started a week before. After, the administration imposed restrictions and snapped internet facilities in the state.

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This was the second step taken by the administration. Just one day before, the National Conference delegation was granted permission by the Governor to visit the detained party chief Farooq Abdullah and his son Omar Abdullah. However, PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti refused to meet party delegation after they were also granted permission.

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