India killing innocent Kashmiris through fake encounters: British Author

ISLAMABAD: While the world has not moved beyond verbal rhetoric, the Indian state continues to martyr innocent Kashmiris in the Occupied Kashmir through fake encounters and other pretexts.

It has completed 550 days today under one of the most brutal, draconian, and inhuman lockdown modern world has ever witnessed.

These views were expressed by the Rosemary Victoria Schofield, a noted British author, biographer, and historian, in her talk to a Webinar as a main speaker.

The Webinar was arranged by the National Institute of Historical and Cultural Research (NIHCR), Quaid-i-Azam University Islamabad to mark the Kashmir Solidarity Day on Friday, February 5 here on “Kashmir under Siege: Pakistan India & an Unending War” here.

Pakistan observes Kashmir Solidarity Day every year to express wholehearted support of the Pakistani nation to the struggle of Kashmiri people for their inalienable right to self-determination under the UN resolutions. The day is marked to expose the worst ever oppression being perpetrated by Indian occupation forces against Kashmiris in Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir.

Answering a question, she regretted that India was killing, injuring, raping, and destroying a defenceless community unabated and the powers that be, turning a blind eye for meager economic interests as those being killed and maimed are the children of a lesser God.

Responding to a question, Ms. Victoria Schofield said that the bilateral deteriorating politico-diplomatic and security relations surely harbour a live possibility of a dangerous escalation between not two but rather three nuclear powers in the region. While spending all its precious efforts and resources to isolate Pakistan both regionally and globally, Indian herself stands isolated seriously impacting her moral, political, and democratic credentials, she commented.

Meanwhile, in his message to the Webinar, Prof Dr. Mohammad Ali, Vice-Chancellor of the Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad, said that currently, the status of human security in Indian Occupied Kashmir, especially political and social security, is troublesome. A year on since the revocation of the legal status of Kashmir, the situation of individual and personal security is quite worrisome, he said.

Raja Mohammad Sajjad Khan, Coordinator, Jammu, and Kashmir Liberation Cell, in his talk to the Webinar, expressed that after August 5, 2019, the situation in Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir has changed. India has snatched the identity of Kashmir through Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Bill 2019. The status of the state was changed to that of union territories. Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir was divided into two union territories: Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh, he regretted.

“The government of Pakistan raised this issue at all international forums including the UN and OIC. International media also highlighted the situation of Kashmir and condemned the actions taken by the Indian fascist regime, ” Sajjad Khan said.

He recalled that the people of Kashmir were facing oppression and atrocities during the Dogra regime. At that time, the All India Kashmir Committee was established by the people of Pakistan to support these oppressive people. At the time of partition in November 1947, Dogra forces, RSS and Akali Dal goons had killed almost 250, 000 Muslims of Jammu. About half a million were forced to leave their homes. The people of Pakistan welcomed them and provided shelter to these refugees, he said.

“In 1948, when India knocked the door of the UN and claimed that Kashmir was her integral part due to the instrument of accession, Pakistan not only rejected her claim but pleaded the case of the right to self-determination of the people of Kashmir. Due to the diplomatic and sincere efforts of Pakistan, UNSC had passed almost 20 resolutions, which clearly state that the future status of Jammu and Kashmir shall be decided by the people of Kashmir through a fair, free and impartial plebiscite under the UN auspices, Sajjad Khan said.

Responding to a question, Khan said that after the announcement of the partition plan, All Jammu and Kashmir Muslim Conference, the only political party representing Muslims of Kashmir and having overwhelming elected representatives of Muslims in Praja Sabha, passed “Accession to Pakistan Resolution” on July 19, 1947. Two other political parties, which were also representing Hindus and Sikhs, Kisan Mazdur Conference and Kashmir Socialist Party, also passed accession to Pakistan resolutions on September 5 and September 18 respectively.

Independence Day of Pakistan, August 14, 1947, was observed by waving flags of Pakistan and celebrations all over Kashmir. Subsequently, the people of Jammu and Kashmir liberated a part of the state in 1947 and established the representative government of the whole state on October 24, 1947.

Prof Dr. Nazir Hussain, Dean, Social Sciences of the Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad in his opening remarks said that Kashmiris have been suffering at the hands of Indian occupation forces since 1947. Kashmiris are hostage to Indian policies as well as territory.

The people of Indian illegally occupied Jammu and Kashmir intensified their struggle for securing the right to self-determination in 1989. The mass uprising gave sleepless nights to the Indian rulers who responded with brutal force to crush the popular movement, he observed.

“The Indian occupation troops have unleashed a reign of terror across India Occupied Jammu and Kashmir. The people of Jammu and Kashmir have strongly resisted India’s illegal occupation of their homeland and launched a movement to liberate it from the Indian yoke. Indian troops have been perpetrating the worst human rights violations in IIOJK since 1947 to intimidate the Kashmiris into submission.

However, despite killing 95, 741 innocent Kashmiris and subjecting over 8, 000 to custodial disappearance and molesting 11, 234 women during the last 32 years, they have failed to subdue the freedom sentiment of the Kashmiris who are committed to take their liberation movement to its logical conclusion, ” Dr. Nazir Hussain recalled.

Welcoming the Webinar speakers, the NIHCR Director Dr Sajid Mahmood Awan said that the Kashmir Solidarity Day focuses on showing Pakistan’s support and solidarity with the people of Indian-occupied Kashmir, their ongoing freedom struggle, and to pay homage to Kashmiri martyrs who lost their lives fighting for Kashmir’s freedom.

“People of Pakistan have been and will continue supporting the just cause of Kashmiris, living in the longest lockdown in illegally Indian occupied Jammu and Kashmir, till they win freedom from forcible Indian occupation, exercise their right of self-determination and decide their future themselves in a free, fair and transparent plebiscite under UN supervision, ” he said.

Dr. Awan opined that one cannot help saying that the UN is helpless in getting its Security Council resolutions implemented to resolve even after more than seven decades of lingering unresolved Kashmir dispute.

Why cannot the world body hold plebiscite in Indian occupied Jammu and Kashmir where the bloodshed, violence, and human rights violations are going on for decades together in an unabated manner? he quested. Dr. Rahat Zubair Malik, Senior Research Fellow of the NIHCR, moderated the Webinar.