As hostility grows between the two nations over the recent developments in Kashmir, India has asked its diplomats to withdraw their kids from schools in Islamabad. According to government sources, Indian officials have been asked to either send their kids back to India or to return themselves.
“What it means is that no Indian official based in Pakistan can have his or her children living with them. Those who seek a posting in Pakistan will have to keep that in mind too,” said an official. Their spouses, however, can remain in Pakistan for now. Currently, about 50 children of Indian officials are studying in Islamabad’s American School.
Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson, Vikas Swarup said, “It is a normal practice for all countries to review staffing and related policies for their diplomatic missions, including in view of prevailing circumstances at those stations. With effect from this academic session, officials posted in the High Commission of India in Islamabad have been advised to make arrangements for education of their wards outside Pakistan, till further notice.” He also added that this decision was taken back in 2015, but the diplomats wanted more time to relocate.
India had already asked the Pakistan government to increase the security of Indian officials posted there, in the wake of the protests against India over alleged Indian atrocities in Kashmir.
“In view of the threats of marches and protests at the high commission of India in Islamabad, we ask the government of Pakistan to ensure full safety and security of the high commission, all its officials and their families in Pakistan,” the government had said in a statement after Pakistan observed a “black day” and Kashmir’s Accession to Pakistan Day.