New Delhi, Jun 14: India on Thursday strongly rejected a report by the United Nations (UN) alleging human rights violation in Kashmir as “fallacious, tendentious and motivated”.
The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA), in a statement, termed the report a “selective compilation of largely unverified statements”, adding that it “violates India’s sovereignty and territorial integrity” and questioned the intent behind it.
“The entire state of Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India. Pakistan is in illegal and forcible occupation of a part of the Indian state through aggression,” the MEA statement added.
In its 49-page report, the United Nations Human Rights Office has called for a probe into alleged human rights violations in Kashmir by both India and Pakistan.
Adding that “people on both sides of the Line of Control have been detrimentally impacted and suffer from limitations or denial of a range of human rights,” the report also asked neighbouring country Pakistan to end its “misuse” of anti-terror legislation to quash dissent.
“Despite the Government of Pakistan’s assertions of denial of any support to these groups, experts believe that Pakistan’s military continues to support their operations across the Line of Control in Indian-Administered Kashmir,” the global human rights watch body said.
It also pointed out that there has been documented evidence of these armed groups committing a wide range of human rights abuses, including kidnappings and killings of civilians and sexual violence in Jammu and Kashmir.
Congress Backs Govt’s Stand, Terms UN Report ‘Prejudiced’
Backing government’s stand against the UN report, the Congress said that it rejects the report as a “prejudiced attempt by vested interests to hurt India’s Sovereignity and National Interests”.
“Jammu & Kashmir is an integral & inseparable part of India. We reject UN Human Rights Report as a prejudiced attempt by vested interests to hurt India’s Sovereignity & National Interests. Congress party supports the Govt’s stand in dismissing the report,” Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala tweeted.
“Jammu & Kashmir is an integral & inseparable part of India. We reject UN Human Rights Report as a prejudiced attempt by vested interests to hurt India’s Sovereignity & National Interests,” he added.
He further accused the UNHRC of preparing the report with “zero understanding of situation in Jammu and Kashmir”. “UNHRC prepared this report remotely with zero understanding of situation in J&K. How does the report justify terrorism by self styled militants of JeM & Hizbul Mujahideen? Should the UN overlook the state sponsored terrorism being exported on Indian soil by Pakistan?” Surjewala asked.
Senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel echoed him and said the report was mischievous and misleading.
“We reject any such ploy to interfere in the internal affairs of India as Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India. Government deserves our full support to deal with the report.” Addressing reporters at the AICC headquarters, Congress leader and former Union minister Rajeev Shukla also condemned the report and said the Congress party supports the stand taken by the government of India on the issue.
He also said terrorists cannot be termed militant groups fighting for their cause.
“I feel the United Nations report has been prepared without visiting the ground and I do not consider it right. The Congress supports the stand taken by the government of India… terming terrorists as militant groups and encouraging them should be rejected and condemned.
BJP Slams Report, Calls it ‘Baseless’
Meanwhile, the BJP trashed the report as “prejudiced and baseless”. Party spokesperson Abil Baluni said the allegation of human rights violations against India is “incomprehensible” and that the only issue about the Valley is the violence caused by Pakistan-sponsored terrorism.
Party General Secretary Ram Madhav said the UN report seems to have been prepared by “some juveniles”, who don’t know the intricacies of the problem.
Firebrand BJP leader Subramanian Swamy also rejected the report, alleging that the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (UNOHCHR) is a highly-prejudiced left dominated organisation.
“We should say to them, ‘to hell with you’. I would throw the report in the dustbin,” Subramanian said. He further added, we don’t comment on reports written by people who don’t know about the subject.
Pakistan Welcomes Proposal of Investigation by UN
Meanwhile, Pakistan has welcomed the proposal by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights to establish a Commission of Inquiry for international investigation into the alleged human rights violations in Kashmir and PoK.
Pakistan said that “this proposal is consistent with Pakistan’s several calls to this effect since 2016, even as India has continued to ignore legitimate demands for probe into gross and systematic violations, including pellet guns excessive use of force, arbitrary arrest and detentions as well as continued sexual violence as part of overall impunity enjoyed by Indian security forces”.
“The report by Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OCHCR) clearly stipulates that its main focus is on the Indian Occupied Jammu & Kashmir. The contents, scale and the narrative of killings, maiming, abuse and impunity articulated in the report is a reaffirmation of what Pakistan has long highlighted for the international community,” a statement said.