It has been two months since the Central Government in India has scrapped Article 370 effectively removing the special status awarded to Jammu and Kashmir for decades. The security in the newly-formed union territories has been beefed up and the government has slowly allowed communication lines regions.
This move came as a shock to Pakistan who has been trying to bring up the issue on the international platform, most recently, the United Nations General Assembly but India said that the abrogation was purely an internal matter.
Chris Van Hollen, a US senator from the Democratic Party, recently expressed interest in visiting the newly-formed union territory to take a look at things for himself but he claimed that the Indian officials did not give him permission to do so.
In an interview with The Indian Express, Van Hollen said that the Indian government told him it was not an appropriate time to visit the place. Van Hollen went on to stress the need for transparency during times like these.
"My personal view is that if you have nothing to hide, there is nothing to fear by allowing visitors to the state," Van Hollen had said, according to the report.
He went on to say that when India and the United States share such a tight bond currently as two of the world's largest democracies, transparency and communication is imperative.
This is not the first time Van Hollen has spoken about Kashmir. He had earlier proposed an amendment to an appropriation bill that spoke about the situation in Kashmir, where he highlighted the crisis in the area and how India had to restore communication in the region.
However, Van Hollen is not the only member of the Democratic Party who has accused India of the lack of transparency in the northernmost region of India. Democratic Party's congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez claimed that Kashmir was not getting medical aid, there was a healthcare crisis and torture and violence against citizens since the abrogation of Article 370.
The Democratic Party congresswoman also retweeted a video of herself talking about Kashmir during the solidarity march for Kashmir in New York.
When Cortez retweeted the video, she wrote, "We stand for the basic human dignity of Kashmiris & support democracy, equality, and human rights for all - including the most vulnerable. Reports of violence & torture are extremely concerning, and the blockade from communication and life-saving medical care must end."