US issues travel advisory against India; Govt says country safe
Two days after a court in Pakistan set Jamaat-ud-Dawa chief Hafiz Mohammad Saeed free, the US has claimed that India is faced with a “high threat” from terrorism and asked its citizens to be vigilant, prompting New Delhi to assert that the country is a safe place and such an advisory was unwarranted.world Updated: Jun 04, 2009 15:46 IST
The US has claimed that India is faced with a “high threat” from terrorism and asked its citizens to be vigilant, prompting New Delhi to assert that the country is a safe place and such an advisory was unwarranted.
Home Minister P Chidambaram said India is “safer than any other country in the world” and New Delhi will try to persuade Washington to withdraw such an advisory.
He was reacting to an ‘Urgent Warden Message´ posted on American Embassy website which cautioned American citizens in India.
“The United States Mission in India wishes to urgently remind all US citizens resident in or travelling to India that there is a high threat from terrorism throughout India,” the message said.
“As terror attacks are a serious and growing threat, US citizens are urged to always practice good security, including maintaining a heightened situational awareness and a low profile,” it said.
The message said, “Americans in India should be vigilant at all times and monitor local news reports and vary their routes and times in carrying out daily activities.”
The advisory asked Americans to consider the level of security present when visiting public places, including religious sites, or choosing hotels, restaurants, entertainment and recreation venues.
Commenting on the advisory, Chidambaram said the MEA will be asked to speak to the US to persuade them to withdraw the advisory.
“India is a completely safe country... India is a safe place, it is safer than any other country in the world. Thousands of tourists come to India and we look forward to welcoming them,” he told reporters.
Asked whether the US was trying to hyphenate India and Pakistan, Chidambaram said, “Why should we jump to conclusions. We will try to find out why this advisory was issued, if at all it was issued.”
First Published: Jun 04, 2009 13:17 IST