By Taj Nabi Khan
ISLAMABAD, Sep 13 (APP):Over eight million Kashmiri people in the Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK) have been locked in their homes for more than six weeks since the unlawful and unilateral actions of India to revoke Articles 35A and 370 of the Indian Constitution on August 5.
Outside the region, their friends and families are unable to get in touch with them amidst the horrible stories of curfews, collective punishments, arrests, abductions, mass rapes, genocide, protests, medical and health emergencies, shortage of food supply and use of excessive force and pallet guns by the occupying forces.
The continuing resistance of the Kashmiri people despite the ongoing curfew in the valley for about forty days makes manifestation of the fact that people were not willing to accept the illegal draconian laws of India in the disputed territory.
The belligerent attitude, irresponsible moves and hegemonic designs of India in the region had put peace and security of the entire region at stake. The India’s actions were not only in breach of international human rights and humanitarian law but also violated the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) Resolutions on Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK).
The basic and inalienable human rights of Kashmiri people are being trampled with impunity by India. If the world community fails in playing a decisive role in diffusing the tension by resolving the Kashmir dispute between the two nuclear-armed neighboring countries — the situation would have serious repercussions not only for the region but for the entire world.
Pakistan, since day one, has extended its support on moral, political, and diplomatic fronts for resolving the Kashmir dispute as per the aspirations of the people of the valley and in accordance with the resolutions of the UNSC.
The nationwide solidarity and raising voice against the ongoing atrocities in IOK, Pakistan has conveyed a strong message to the world community that the oppressed Kashmiri people are not alone in this critical time. For how long the international community would let the occupying forces to play with the lives and properties of innocent people in the valley? It is high time for the UNSC to take practical steps to resolve the longstanding Kashmir dispute for putting an end to the miseries of Kashmiri people.
The deployment of 180,000 troops in addition to 700,000 personnel already present in occupied Kashmir is actually a trick to forcibly annex the territory with the Indian union and to expel the Kashmiri people from their own homeland. It is under the garb of the worst curfew restrictions and media censorship, ethnic cleansing of the Kashmiri people is being carried out.
Showing deep concerns over the ongoing situation in Kashmir and terming it “an international issue”, the UK has also asked for investigation against the human rights violations in Kashmir since India revoked the Article 370 of the Constitution — the allegations must be “thoroughly, promptly and transparently” investigated.
Speaking at a daylong seminar on “Kashmir: Heaven in Ashes”, organized by Center for Global & Strategic Studies (CGSS), President of Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Sardar Masood Khan said, “There is a humanitarian crisis in IOK as the people there are being faced with the shortages of food items and medicines.”
He said that the whole Kashmir valley was completely under siege, and the carnage of innocent civilians was continuing at the hands of Indian troops. Kashmiri people have been fighting against the Indian tyranny and oppression over the last seven decades, he asserted. On the occasion, Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee, General Zubair Mahmood Hayat said that India was focusing on manifestation of Hindutva and moving towards Akhand Bharat.
He said that Kashmir was the most militarized zone in the world which has now turned into the largest prison and remained the nuclear flash point for the South Asian region. Discussing the continued and deteriorating human rights situation in Indian Occupied Kashmir (IOK) with President Human Rights Council (HRC) Ambassador Coly Seck, Permanent Representative of Senegal to the United Nations in Geneva on September 11, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi has said that India was attempting to change the demography of IOK through its illegal and unilateral actions in violation of the relevant UNSC resolutions and international law.
Qureshi also apprised the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet on the situation in the occupied territory. He said that India’s record of repression and human rights violations has been extensively documented in OHCHR’s two reports but India had continued with the abuses.