Cross-border terrorism promoted by Pakistan is the "fundamental" reason for the unrest in Kashmir, India said at the United Nations Human Rights
Council (UNHRC) in Geneva while slamming Islamabad for raking up the issue for propaganda purposes and for ignoring its own obligation under UN resolutions
to first vacate the illegal occupation of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.
Accusing Islamabad of resorting to "short-sighted tactics" to divert attention, India also told the UNHRC
that Pakistan has been given "concrete evidence" about its cross-border "encouragement and support" for the protests in Kashmir.
India's 'glass house' argument
India's arguments against Pakistan at the UNHRC
amounted to the popular proverb 'people who live in glass houses shouldn't throw stones'.
Exercising India's fourth right of reply, India said, "Islamabad has had territorial ambitions over the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir since 1947 and it has been using this forum to rake up Jammu and Kashmir issue while it has a poor record on human rights
in the Pakistan-Occupied Kashmir, in other parts of Pakistan, including Balochistan, which is adversely affecting the stability of the entire region. Pakistan's continued mistreatment of large parts of its own population has created a cauldron of tumult that has begun to jeopardise the safety and security of its neighbouring countries," India said at the UN Human Rights
India raised the issue of Balochistan again and urged the UNHRC
to take a "clear-cut stance" against state-sponsored terrorism.
The Balochistan card
Pointing to the atrocities being committed by Pakistani authorities on the Baloch people, India said, "The people of Balochistan, among 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, Sunnis, Ahmadiyas, Ismailis, and others continue to face discrimination, persecution and targeted attacks in Pakistan. Places of worship belonging to minorities have been destroyed and vandalised. Blasphemy laws remain in force and are disproportionately used against religious minorities."
Various international organisations have documented how enforced disappearances continue with impunity, particularly in Balochistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, and Sindh, where members of the Muttahida Quami Movement are routinely abducted and unlawfully killed. More than a million people remain displaced as a result of the current and past armed conflicts in the northwest of Pakistan.
Given this state of affairs, Pakistan would 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, India argued.
'Scourge' of terror is Kashmir's foremost challenge
"The fundamental reason for disturbances in Kashmir is cross-border terrorism promoted by Pakistan. Active support since 1989 to separatist groups in Kashmir and terrorist elements from different parts of the world, including from territory under Pakistan's control, has become a central element of Pakistan's state policy," the statement added.
India urged the Council to call upon Pakistan to end cross-border infiltration, dismantle the infrastructure of support to terrorism and to stop acting as an epicentre of international terrorism.
"Pakistan's unsolicited and unwarranted comments pertaining to the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir, which is an integral part of the Union of India, are factually incorrect and bear no relationship to reality," India had said in its statement at the UNHRC
earlier this week.
Asserting that Pakistan is using terror to destabilise Kashmir, it said, "The foremost challenge to stability in Kashmir is the scourge of terrorism, which receives sustenance from Pakistan and the territories under Pakistan's control."
"Contrary to Pakistan's claims, and in gross violation of UN Security Council Resolution 1267, the designated terrorist entities and organisations continue to carry out their activities freely as reported in the local Pakistani print, audio-visual and social media," it said.
"Instead of working with a sense of purpose to address this issue, Pakistan resorts to short-sighted tactics to divert attention, as we have once again seen today," it said.
"Pakistan keeps referring to UN Security Council Resolutions on Jammu and Kashmir. However, it very conveniently forgets its own obligation under these resolutions to first vacate the illegal occupation of Pakistan Occupied Kashmir," India said.
Pakistan had described the situation in Kashmir as "India's national
shame" and said that this "hateful cycle can only be stopped through political dialogue".
India also criticised Pakistan for "blatantly" disregarding its other commitments saying, "be it under the 1972 Simla Agreement, the 2004 joint declaration foreswearing terrorism as well as the understanding between our two Prime Ministers at Ufa in Russia".
"The people of Jammu and Kashmir have chosen and reaffirmed their destiny repeatedly through India's well- established democratic processes. Pakistan, on the other hand, has witnessed continuous degradation and weakening of its institutions," it said.