India, Pakistan spar at UN Human Rights Council

In the wake of growing international concern, Pakistan must shut down its terrorism factory, said India

shreerupa

Shreerupa Mitra-Jha | March 17, 2017 | Geneva


#Kashmir   #Pakistan   #UN human rights council   #India  



The UN Human Rights Council (HRC) has become the new platform for verbal spats between India and Pakistan as the rival countries have already clashed four times during the ongoing session of the HRC.


This time it began when the Pakistani Federal Minister for Law and Justice Zahid Hamid, speaking at the high-level segment on March, said that "the Indian claim that the deteriorating human rights situation in Jammu and Kashmir is an internal affair of India is factually incorrect, legally untenable and in violation of the UN Security Council  (UNSC) resolution".
 
"Equally false is the Indian narrative that the situation in Jammu and Kashmir is about terrorism,” he added.
 
Pakistan also said that it supports the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights’ stand that a UN human rights team should visit J&K to "independently and impartially investigate the grave human rights violations being perpetrated by Indian forces".
 
However, this statement by the Pakistani politician was only partly true. The human rights chief Zeid Ra’ad Al-Hussein had asked for access to visit both Jammu and Kashmir as well as Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) in the 33rd session of the UNHRC held in September 2016.
 
“Members will recognise the irony of a nation that has established a well-earned reputation of being a global epicenter of terrorism holding forth on human rights,” the Permanent Representative of India to the UN office at Geneva Ajit Kumar told the HRC in response to the statement.
 
“For the last two decades, the most wanted terrorists of the world have found succor and sustenance in Pakistan,” he added.
 
“I would also like to point out that Pakistan’s unwarranted references to UN Security Council resolutions are grossly misleading as Pakistan was required to vacate parts of the state of J&K under its illegal and forced occupation,” Kumar said.
 
Additionally, India used it Right of Reply (RoR) and “urged” Pakistan to fulfill its obligation under UN Security Council resolutions “to vacate illegal occupation of PoK”.
 
“We, once again, ask Pakistan to stop inciting and supporting violence and terrorism in any part of India and refrain from meddling in our internal affairs in any manner,” Alok R. Jha, counsellor at the Indian mission to the UN office at Geneva said the same day.
 
India also noted with “regret” that the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) has used the HRC to comment on the internal matters of the country. 
 
“Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India and the OIC has no locus standi in matters concerning India's internal affairs,” India said.
Pakistan used its RoR to accuse India of interfering in Balochistan and said “dossiers of Indian subversive activities in Balochistan and apprehended RAW agent Kulbhushan Yadav have been handed over to the UN Secretary General”.
 
The rival countries clashed again during a general debate on Al-Hussein’s report on human rights violations across the world that he presented to the HRC on March 9.
 
“The whole state of Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India. Pakistan remains in illegal occupation of a part of our territory. The two cannot and should not be equated. The neutrality of the term 'Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir' is, therefore, artificial,” Kumar told the Council.
 
“The central problem in J&K is cross-border terrorism and hence, we are a little surprised that the High Commissioner [for human rights] was silent regarding Pakistan that uses terrorism as an instrument of state policy,” Kumar added.
 
Al-Hussein while presenting his report had said that he has received indications of severe violations in many parts of the world, including J&K and PoK where the access to his Office continues to be refused. In such places, his team has begun remote monitoring the situation and sending fact-finding missions to neighbouring countries-- the findings from which will be made public in June.
 
Pakistan had earlier in the day made a statement that it had not denied the UN High Commissioner’s office access to “to Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK)” but that this should be done in tandem with a mission to the “Indian-occupied Jammu and Kashmir, even though there is no comparison whatsoever in the situation in AJK and the gross, systematic and widespread human rights violations committed with impunity by 70,000 Indian-occupation forces in Indian-occupied Kashmir”.
 
India using its RoR had said “the matters that need to be addressed are Pakistan's illegal occupation of a part of the state of Jammu and Kashmir and the continued suffering of the people of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir who are victims of sectarian conflict, terrorism, extreme economic hardship and discriminatory policies”.
 
The “continued operations” of terrorist groups from Pakistan that has resulted in a series of terrorist attacks in India has denied its victims the most fundamental of rights, which is the right to life, Jha said.
 
Pakistan, using its RoR, called India’s argument “absurd”. India “twisted facts” by claiming that Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India, the Pakistani delegate said.
 
On March 10, during a general debate on ‘promotion and protection of all human rights, civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights, including the right to development’, India using its RoR said that former Pakistani president Pervez Musharraf, and Pakistan’s former national security adviser Mahmud Ali Durrani “have admitted” that several terrorist groups were supported and trained by Pakistan to create disturbances in Kashmir. So, “no wonder, the perpetrators of Mumbai and other recent attacks have not been brought to justice by Pakistan,” India had told the council on 10 March.
 
“In the wake of growing international concern, Pakistan must shut down its terrorism factory,” India added.
 
“A fresh chapter of barbarity unfolded with the shooting of peaceful demonstrators and innocent bystanders with pellet guns, which has resulted in the world’s first mass blinding,” Pakistan told the Council earlier the same day.
 
The most broadcasted Indian statement by the national media, however, came on March 15 when India fielded a young woman diplomat Nabanita Chakrabarti to respond to Pakistani statements.
 
“Apart from becoming world’s terrorism factory, Pakistan has also alienated its own people through continued mistreatment of Hindus, Christians, Shias, Ahmadiyas and other minorities,” the under-secretary at New Delhi’s ministry of External Affairs said.
 
“In this council, Pakistan has referred to situation of minorities in India. Minorities in India have been prime ministers, presidents, vice-presidents, senior cabinet ministers, senior civil servants, cricket team captains, Bollywood superstars. Can the minorities of Pakistan claim even a shadow of this? All they have are blasphemy laws and relentless abuse and violation of their human rights,” Chakrabarti added using India’s Right of Reply (RoR) during a discussion on ‘human rights situations that require the council’s attention’ at the Council.
 
Pakistan must rein in its “compulsive hostility” towards India — it has a “selective approach” in tackling terror groups operating outside Pakistan and within.
 
“We do not accept attempts by Pakistan to denigrate the democratic choice that has been regularly exercised by the people of Jammu & Kashmir over the last six decades since our independence,” India said. 
 
Pakistan had earlier said that “the repression in Jammu and Kashmir is the most reprehensible manifestation of the flogging of human rights and the unleashing of violence by an increasingly communal and extremist state”.
 
With a week to go before the HRC wraps up its 34th session one expects a few more clashes at the rights body before the two countries call it a day.
 
There were similar confrontations at the last session of the HRC held in September 2016.
 

Comments

 

Other News

Mumbai`s stalled building projects: Is self-redevelopment the real solution?

Land in Mumbai city, which is surrounded by water on three sides, is scarce and has a premium. Property prices in certain areas of financial capital of the country are as much as Rs 1 lakh per sq ft. Yet, 5,800 buildings have been lying in a stalled condition for the last 18 years. Meanwhile

Revadi, electoral reforms and fiscal responsibility

Revadi (sweetmeat) or more popular word, ‘freebies’, has been dominating headlines recently. A public interest litigation (PIL) has been filed in Supreme Court to bar all political parties from making such promises. In response, one leading political party, Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), has filed thei

Jal Jeevan Mission: 6.70 crore households provided with tap water connections

Since August 2019, Government of India, in partnership with States, is implementing Jal Jeevan Mission (JJM) to make provision of potable tap water supply every rural household by 2024. As many as 6.70 crore households have been provided with tap water connections in the 35 months, since Aug

Cloud inclusivity: Ensuring highly regulated organisations are ready for a cloud-first world

Over the last few years, cloud has been able to create a special place for itself amongst fast moving, competitive and growth-led organisations. As the technology became an imperative, it has undoubtedly created unique business opportunities and isbecoming an anchor for innovation for leading businesses gl

1.29 crore voters chose NOTA in five years

None-of-the-above, or NOTA – the option introduced for voters in 2013 when they don’t want to support any of the candidate – has made some progress. In the past five years, NOTA has secured 1,29,77,627 votes in state assembly elections and Lok Sabha election, according to an analysis by t

India committs to reduce Emissions Intensity of GDP by 45% by 2030

India stands committed to reduce Emissions Intensity of its GDP by 45 percent from the 2005 level by 2030 and achieve about 50 percent cumulative electric power installed capacity from non-fossil fuel-based energy resources by 2030. The country’s India’s updated Nationally Determined Contributi

Visionary Talk: Amitabh Gupta, Pune Police Commissioner with Kailashnath Adhikari, MD, Governance Now


Archives

Current Issue

Opinion

Facebook    Twitter    Google Plus    Linkedin    Subscribe Newsletter

Twitter