Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar, during a meeting with the Pentagon reporters in the United States on Tuesday, said that forces from Pakistan are trying to fuel tensions in Kashmir, which is grappling with violence.
Parrikar also said that a "small percentage" of people in Kashmir are holding the majority of the citizens at ransom. Kashmir was under a curfew of 52 days amid clashes of protesters with the security forces after Hizbul Mujahideen militant Burhan Wani was killed in an encounter. The curfew was lifted in most areas in the Valley on Monday, but was reimposed in certain sections of Srinagar after reports of fresh clashes.
"As far as Kashmir is concerned, the Indian government has been very proactive in handling the violence which comes from across the border," Parrikar told Pentagon reporters during a news conference with U.S. Defence Secretary Ashton Carter.
The curfew has been lifted from the region and an all-party government delegation will soon visit Kashmir, Parrikar added, when asked about the current situation in the state.
"Kashmir has a government which is a democratically elected. And the chief minister belongs to the Valley," Parrikar said.
In a historical move, India and the United States signed an agreement, called Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement (LEMOA), that allows both the nations to access each other's military bases for the provision of logistical support, supplies, services and repairs. However, Parrikar and Carter both made it clear that the agreement will not involve setting up of military bases in the nations.
LEMOA seeks to facilitate deeper engagement between the militaries of the two countries. The agreement boosts India's defence relationship with the U.S. as both seek to counter a growing dominance of the Chinese military.