Dr Ghulam Mir
THE World Kashmir Awareness Forum condemns Indian govt’s continued brutal repression in the State of Jammu and Kashmir and refusal to reverse its August 5, 2019 decision of unilaterally abrogating Articles 370 and 35-A of its constitution that stripped the autonomous State of Jammu & Kashmir its special status.
We reject the capricious and undemocratic decision of the Indian government to arbitrarily dismember and break up the State into three separate regions of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh, and after abolishing the elected Legislative bodies and rule them by bureaucratic fiat from New Delhi as the so-called Union Territories beginning November1, 2019. It is the flagrant violation of India’s obligations of the international law.
WKAF stands with the people of Jammu and Kashmir facing the inhumane conditions created by the Indian administration’s lockdown, communication black out, mass arrests, torture of detainees, restriction of freedom of speech and peaceful assembly. The world is horrified to watch almost a million Indian military and paramilitary forces deployed in the State, especially in densely populated urban and rural areas, using live ammunition, pellet guns, torture and other forms of State sanctioned violence against men, women and children living in Jammu & Kashmir.
The Indian government must immediately reinstate Article 370 and Article 35-A, restore political and administrative unity of the three regions of the State and end all draconian laws under which civil liberties have been abolished and create a conducive atmosphere to enable the people of Kashmir to exercise their internationally mandate right to self-determination.
We demand immediate and complete restoration of all basic human rights, including freedom of movement, assembly and speech, and access to all forms of communication. We also demand release of all political prisoners. And bring all the Kashmiri youth who have been kidnapped at the behest of the state and lodged in prisons across India with little access to their families.
Despite claiming to be the largest democracy, India’s policy towards Kashmir has been uniformly colonial, brutal, deceitful and undemocratic. While India, initially, explicitly accepted the Security Council resolutions mandating a free and impartial plebiscite in Kashmir under the auspices of the United Nations, it soon reneged on its own obligation realizing that the people of Kashmir would vote against India in an unfettered plebiscite.
WKAF appeals to the international community to use its diplomatic, moral and economic leverage with India to fulfill its commitment of the right of self-determination to the people of Jammu and Kashmir according to the United Nations Security Council Resolutions of 1948 and 1949.
We believe that a just and lasting settlement of the dispute is possible only through negotiations of all parties concerned, i.e., the genuine leadership of the State of Jammu and Kashmir, Governments of India and Pakistan under direct supervision of UN. (This statement was issued by US-based WKAF President, Dr G N Mir on 3 November 2019).