India said there was “incontrovertible evidence” that Pakistan had a “direct hand” in a bomb attack on a convoy that killed at least 40 people in Indian-administered Kashmir.
After a Cabinet Committee on Security meeting on Friday, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said in a statement that India would initiate “all possible diplomatic steps” to “ensure the complete isolation from the international community of Pakistan, of which incontrovertible evidence is available of having a direct hand in this gruesome terrorist incident.”
Jaitley added that India would downgrade diplomatic relations by withdrawing its “most favored nation status” to Pakistan – a largely symbolic title.
Thursday’s attack on a convoy of Indian soldiers killed 40 and wounded five, said M. Dhinakaran, deputy inspector general of the Central Reserve Police Force. It was deadliest attack on security forces since the beginning of the insurgency in the late 1980s.
The Indian government has blamed a Pakistan-based terrorist organization for the attack. “This heinous and despicable act has been perpetrated by Jaish-e-Mohammed,” India’s foreign ministry said in a statement.
“The Government of India is firmly and resolutely committed to take all necessary measures to safeguard national security…We demand that Pakistan stop supporting terrorists and terror groups operating from their territory and dismantle the infrastructure operated by terrorist outfits to launch attacks in other countries,” the statement continued.
On Friday, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi issued a warning to terrorist groups, saying that the “the blood of the people is boiling.”
“I want to tell the terrorist organizations and their supporters that have made a huge mistake. They will have to pay a very heavy cost for this. I give assurance to the nation that the forces behind the attack, the culprits behind this attack – they will definitely be punished for their actions,” he said at an event in New Delhi.