India has told the United States embassy that its travel advisory warning American tourists of possible terrorist attacks in India during the festive season is a “disproportionate” move.
“We have certainly told the Americans – and we will be speaking to the others – that the language in these advisories is a little disproportionate,” Foreign Secretary Ranjan Mathai told journalists on Tuesday. “We will continue to convey to them that whatever they wish to do under their own legal obligations should be proportionate and carefully modulated.”
Apart from the U.S., which has warned its citizens “to pay particular attention to their personal security during the Indian holiday season”, Australia, New Zealand, Canada and the United Kingdom have also issued similar advisories.
Tourism Minister Subodh Kant Sahai had expressed his concerns that the issue of terrorism was being raised to create a scare, and pointed out that Jammu and Kashmir had recorded the highest number of tourist arrivals in the last quarter century. He had raised the issue with the Foreign Secretary, pointing out that such advisories could have a negative impact on the tourism industry.
Meanwhile, the government is pointing fingers at the Indian media as being partially responsible for the advisories. “Some countries seem to have based their advisories on reports about heightened security in a section of the press,” said Mr. Mathai. He admitted that the government itself had also issued security advisories, which “were not of the same nature”, and added that the embassy advisories were based on a combination of different sources.