UN urged to probe gang rapes by India
n troops in occupied Kashmir
South Asian News Agency (SANA) ⋅ March 20, 2012 ⋅ Share/Save GENEVA,
(SANA): Kashmiri representatives have called upon the United Nations Human Rights Council to constitute an inquiry commission to probe into the allegations of gang rape in occupied Kashmir.
Taking part in the general debate of the 19th session of the United Nations Human Rights Council, Kashmiri representatives Altaf Hussain Wani and Sardar Amjad Yousaf, urged the UN body to impress upon India to allow UNICEF
and other International NGOs, working on child welfare, to visit Kashmir to see for themselves the plight of the children in the territory.
Participating in the debate Altaf Hussain Wani said that the denial of UN promised right to self-determination to the people of Jammu and Kashmir had led India to perpetrate human rights violations in the territory.
Torture, extra-judicial killings, arbitrary detention, enforced disappearances, rape, declared and undeclared curfew and crackdowns on local populations and raids on hospitals and harassment of the media persons by over half a million Indian army and paramilitary forces armed with a blanket of draconian laws is everyday affair in Kashmir, he said.
Children in Kashmir are deprived of rights as enshrined in the International Convention on Right To Child, Altaf reminded.
The draconian Public Safety Act (PSA) empowers the authorities to keep minors in detention for up to two years without trial, he said.
The Kashmiri representative cited a recently released report `Juveniles of Jammu and Kashmir: Unequal before the Law & Denied Justice in Custody`, which describes the juvenile justice system in occupied Kashmir as rotten justice.
Minors in pre-trial detention are assumed to be adults and are routinely detained with adult criminals, placing them at very high risk of abuse, in clear violation of national laws and international human rights standards, he quoted the report.
He said that children in Kashmir also showed a high level of mental trauma because of the inhuman and degrading treatment that they come to interact ever since their childhood.
Majority of the children in Kashmir have deep, permanent bruises of the mind. Bruises that have far-reaching consequences, that are now finding reflection in psychic disorders, drug abuse and personality changes, he stated.
Sardar Amjad Yousaf in his address said that the plight of women and children in the occupied territory had almost no parallel in any other part of the globe. Women in Kashmir suffer rape, molestation, kin`s disappearances, psychological trauma and torture, he said.
According to the local human rights groups and media reports, more than 9000 women of all ages have become victims of gang rape and molestation. Many go unreported because of the fear of social stigma, and of reprisal by Indian agencies, he informed the participants.
A study done by Medicines Sans Frontiers in mid 2005 reveals that Kashmiri women are among the worst sufferers of sexual violence in the world, he pointed out.
It further mentions that since the beginning of 1989, sexual violence has been routinely perpetrated on Kashmiri women, with 11.6 per cent of respondents saying they were victims of sexual abuse, he remarked.
Rape victims have lost the faith in militarized justice system in the territory. Unfortunately, this council has largely remained silent in condemning the gag rape by Indian armed forces in Indian occupied Kashmir, Sardar Amjad deplored.