India raises Baloch issue at UN Human Rights Council

SansadTV Bureau
New York: Free Balochistan Movement members holding a protest against Pakistan outside the UN headquarters in New York on Tuesday. PTI Photo

New York: Free Balochistan Movement members holding a protest against Pakistan outside the UN headquarters in New York on Tuesday. PTI Photo

To embarrass Pakistan at international fora, India has raised the issue of atrocities in Balochistan at the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva. India also highlighted human rights violations in Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and Sindh and persecution of minorities including Hindus.

Not just that, India also warned Pakistan to shun terror and not meddle in India’s internal matter of Jammu and Kashmir.

“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. We call upon the Council to urge Pakistan to fulfill its obligation to vacate illegal occupation of Pakistan Occupied Kashmir,” India said in its right to reply at the 33rd Session of the UN Human Rights Council.

It said Pakistan continues to test the patience as well as wisdom of the Council with its unceasing false-narrative backed by fabricated facts and figures about Jammu & Kashmir.

“Pakistan has had territorial ambitions over Kashmir since 1947 that has found concrete expression in the aggression it embarked on in 1947, 1965 and 1999. As on date, Pakistan is in illegal and forcible occupation of 78,000 sq kms (approx) of Indian Territory in Jammu & Kashmir,” it said.

The fundamental reason for disturbances in Kashmir is cross-border terrorism promoted by Pakistan, it added.

Raising human rights violations in Pakistan, India said, “the people of Balochistan, amongst other provinces, have been waging for decades a bitter and brave struggle against their daily abuse and torture….Religious and sectarian minorities such as Hindus, Christians, Shias, Ahmaddiyas, Ismailis and others continue to face discrimination, persecution and targeted attacks in Pakistan. Places of worship belonging to minorities have been destroyed and vandalized. Blasphemy laws remain in force and are disproportionately used against religious minorities.”

Underlining that more than one million people remain displaced as a result of the current and past armed conflicts in the northwest of Pakistan, India said, “Pakistan will be well-advised to focus its energies on setting its own house in order and acting against the perpetrators of terrorist attacks on its neighbours instead of ritually raking up alleged human rights violations elsewhere.”

Earlier, making a statement at the session here, India called upon the Council to urge Pakistan to put an end to cross-border infiltration; dismantle the terrorism infrastructure; and stop acting as an epicentre of terrorism.

India said it firmly believes that a policy of “zero tolerance” against terrorism is as much an international obligation as it is a commitment to its own people.

The Indian statement comes a day after heavily armed militants suspected to be from Pakistan-based JeM had stormed an army base in Uri in Kashmir, killing 18 jawans in one of the deadliest attacks on its military.

“India has been a long-suffering victim of terrorism emanating from our neighbourhood. The fundamental reason for disturbances in Kashmir is cross-border terrorism promoted by Pakistan which is so ruthless that it does not shy away from using civilians and even children by putting them in harm’s way, at the forefront of violent mobs instigated and supported by their handlers from across the border,” India said.

India urged the international community to address the plethora of human rights concerns in Pakistan because the impact has begun to affect the region and the world.

(With inputs from PTI)