Islamabad seminar asks UN to hold plebiscite in Jammu and Kashmir

Srinagar, March 15, 2018 (PPI-OT): Speakers at a seminar on Kashmir held in Islamabad, today, reminded the UN of its obligations to implement its resolutions that promised the Kashmiris of giving their right to self-determination. The seminar was organized by the All Parties Hurriyat Conference in collaboration with the Kashmir Media Service and the speakers included Foreign Office Spokesman, Dr Muhammad Faisal, Justice (retd) Manzoor Hussain Gilani, Ghulam Muhammad Safi, Muhammad Farooq Rehmani, Syed Yousuf Naseem, Sheikh Tajammul-ul-Islam, Dr Farzana Bari, Ishtiaq Hameed, Dr Shaheen Akhtar, Rafiq Dar, Chaudhry Lateef Akbar and Afzal Hussain.

The speakers said that India was yet to fulfil its pledges made at the highest level in particular, the statements by the then Indian Prime Minister, Jawaharlal Nehru, in October 1947 and 1951 to allow the people of Kashmir to decide their future through a plebiscite.

They expressed serious concern over the ongoing gross human rights violations perpetrated by the Indian troops in occupied Kashmir particularly the latest round of killings and brutalities in the name of All Out Operation carried out by the Indian army and on the pretext of over ground workers of the so-called militants. They condemned the use of pellet guns by the Indian forces to willfully blind the Kashmiris, mostly youth, in thousands and new methods of terror unleashed in Kashmir in line with the malicious plans of the BJP and RSS.

The speakers expressed deep anguish over the continued detention of Hurriyat leaders and unlawful restrictions imposed on them by the Indian authorities in occupied Kashmir. They deplored that India was using its investigating agencies like National Investigating Agency (NIA) and Enforcement Directorate besides the black laws like Public Safety Act (PSA) to put Hurriyat leaders behind the bars, harass them and prevent their access to the people of the occupied territory.

The speakers paid glowing tributes to senior APHC leader Masarrat Aalam Butt on completing twenty years of illegal detention and to all Hurriyat leaders and activists including Shabbir Ahmed Shah, Dr Muhammad Qasim Fakhtoo and Ghulam Muhammad Khan Sopori, who have been undergoing long periods of illegal detentions. They noted with serious concern the Indian machinations to turn the overwhelming Muslim majority population in Kashmir into a minority by settling Indian citizens in occupied Kashmir and by plans to abrogate Article 370 and Article 35A of the Indian Constitution.

The speakers denounced the tactics being employed by India to force the Muslim population in Jammu to migrate from the region and said that the UN has a responsibility to stop human rights violations and the Kashmiris’ systematic genocide by the Indian occupation forces in the territory. They highlighted the issue of disappearance in custody of over 10,000 Kashmiris and recalled the massacres committed in Kashmir by Indian forces between 1990 and 2017.

The speakers also referred to the findings of reports of investigating organizations in the wake of discovery of unnamed and unmarked mass graves in occupied Kashmir. They also expressed concern over the escalating tensions between Pakistan and India on the UN-supervised ceasefire line and the killing of civilians by the Indian forces by the use of heavy arms near the Line of Control.

A resolution passed during the seminar called upon the United Nations to assume its responsibility of organizing the plebiscite in Jammu and Kashmir under its supervision in accordance with its resolutions on Kashmir. It demanded of all international bodies including United Nations and human rights organisations to mount pressure on India to release all illegally detained Hurriyat leaders and activists and repeal black laws.

The resolution urged the UN and other relevant international fora to investigate all massacres, gang-rapes, fake-encounters, forced disappearances, wilful blinding of youth with the use of pellet guns, etc. by the Indian forces and Hindu terrorist organizations like RSS and BJP and bring the perpetrators to justice. It asked the United Nations to take serious note of the Indian designs to convert the Muslim majority in Indian occupied Kashmir into a minority as these designs are intended to defeat the essence of Kashmiris’ inalienable right to self-determination, the purpose of relevant UN resolutions on Jammu and Kashmir and the results of plebiscite whenever held in the territory in compliance with the UNSC resolutions.

The resolution requested all international organizations including the OIC and EU to play a meaningful and effective role in the resolution of the Kashmir dispute. Further, that these organizations formally approach India to allow access for international organizations to occupied Kashmir. It urged India to cease forthwith all human rights violations and stop the bloodshed of the people of Kashmir.

The resolution appealed to the international community to take cognizance of Indian ploy to curtail Hurriyet leaders’ movement and defame them by implicating them in fake cases, causing harassment by conducting raids on their houses through its organisations like NIA and Enforcement Directorate and subjecting them to torture in notorious prisons like Tihar Jail of New Delhi.

The resolution demanded of the government of Pakistan and all national parties of the country to adopt a proactive approach to project in the world the Indian state terrorism in occupied Kashmir and take all steps to assure Pakistan’s full and unconditional support to the people of Kashmir in their legitimate freedom struggle and make further steps towards utilising all relevant UN mechanisms to bring to justice the perpetrators of crimes against humanity committed by the Indian authorities in occupied Kashmir.

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