In a veiled attack on Pakistan, India has said that nothing damages the credibility of the cause of human rights more severely than its misuse as a “decoy” by a country which provides patronage and safe havens to the “linchpins of terror networks”.

Pakistan this week raked up the issue of Jammu and Kashmir at the UN, referring to the communications lockdown in the state following the abrogation of Article 370 of the Constitution. The Pakistani representative noted that the Kashmiri people were being denied their basic rights.

Responding to this, First Secretary in India’s Permanent Mission to the UN Paulomi Tripathi said, “Nothing damages the credibility of the cause of human rights more severely than its misuse as a decoy, to divert attention from the real issues.”

“Unfortunately, one delegation, in yet another such attempt, has referred to an internal matter of my country,” Tripathi said on Monday in the General Assembly’s Third Committee (Social, Humanitarian and Cultural), making a veiled reference to Pakistan.

“The truth is – as far too many victims of terrorism all over the world languish in trauma, the linchpins of terror networks enjoy the patronage and safe havens in this country, she said.

Tripathi asserted that the international community is too familiar with “this deceitful tactic” and has “rejected” these attempts for what these are – “desperate attempts to mask territorial ambition.”

She said that India does not wish to dwell upon the issue any further.

Speaking at the Third Committee debate on Promotion and protection of human rights’, Tripathi said a state’s human rights obligations extend to all branches and nations need to build the capacity of multiple actors and enable coordination among them.

“Capacity building and technical cooperation, therefore, have a crucial role in this matrix,” she said.

Further, the right to development remains important and its operationalisation needs to be prioritised.

She also noted that the Universal Periodic Review is a platform for dialogue and cooperation on human rights situations in all countries and nations must avoid turning the review “into a platform for pushing selective human rights issues.”

Tripathi also stressed the need to envision human rights protection measures for the digital age, keeping in view emerging issues such as right to non-discrimination in the age of algorithm; freedom of expression online controlled by private platforms; right to privacy in the era of data collection and how to counter misuse of these technologies that lead to human rights abuses.