Friday, October 01, 2010

INDIA: Pot calling the kettle black

Asian Human Rights Commission, Sept 29, 2010

The argument between the foreign ministers of India and Pakistan concerning Kashmir during the UN General Assembly debate exposes the lack of respect both these governments entertain for their people, particularly to those living in Kashmir and for international human rights norms. Pakistan, as a member state of the UN has every right to publically point fingers at its neighbour, India, concerning human rights abuses committed by India in Kashmir. So has India a right to highlight the accuser’s appalling human rights standards in reply.

Accusation and counter accusation will not help to ameliorate the current situation of Kashmiris living on both sides of the border. To say the least, the debate only resulted in the folly of the pot calling the kettle black. Unfortunately it is at the expense of the taxpayers’ money. It is anybody’s guess what these ministers could achieve by holding a bilateral discussion in New York, though it is certain that the meeting will do nothing to end the ongoing violence in Kashmir, irrespective of which side of the international border it is committed.

India on its part is engaged in violence with impunity in Kashmir not a bit less than its neighbour, Pakistan, in the Kashmir Pakistan occupies. Both countries are engaged in sabotage and counter sabotage, infiltrating each other’s borders. For India, these sabotages have largely remained within the limited realm of a military and political requirement for a ‘tit for tat’ reply and to stir up trouble to keep the perceived enemy busy.

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