Stories of individuals affected by atrocities touch people the most and these should be used through powerful narrative to tell the world about gross human rights violations in Indian Occupied Kashmir (IoK). The Kashmiri diaspora can play a leading role in this initiative, said the participants of a meeting held at Institute of Policy Studies (IPS), Islamabad.
The fourth meeting of the working group on Kashmir, formed by IPS to keep an eye on the latest developments in IoK post 5 August 2019, also called for exploring all legal avenues regarding these abuses.
The meeting, held on November 12, was chaired by IPS’ Executive President Khalid Rahman, while the guest speakers were London-based Kashmiri activists Muzamil Ayub Takur and Shaista Safi. The participants included Ambassador (r) Syed Abrar Hussain, Ambassador (r) Ayaz Wazir, Ambassador (r) Tajammul Altaf, Brigadier (r) Said Nazir, former AJK minister Farzana Yaqoob, Amanullah Khan, former president, Rawalpindi Chamber of Commerce & Industry (RCCI), Shakil Turabi, senior journalist and head of South Asian Broadcasting Agency (SABAH), Ghulam Muhammad Safi, Hurriyat leader, Advocate Nasir Qadri and Advocate Rafia Sailani.
The speakers were of the opinion that in the era of the war of narratives it must be kept in mind that many lobbies are involved in the Kashmir issue and care must be taken not to alienate any major group that supports the cause. Instead, the key is to create awareness, which will provide motivation and lead to doable action.
The meeting proposed setting up a Kashmir public war crimes tribunal, with lawyers and judges based in Azad Kashmir, to debate individual cases and present them before the world.
The speakers said proceedings of such cases should be dubbed in major languages and circulated through all available channels, including social media, to effectively highlight the plight of Kashmiris. This will mold public opinion in key countries and ultimately the opinion of their governments and will translate into positive action.