Human Rights Violations in Kashmir

In March 1989, the Indian army came out into the streets of Kashmir in response to an uprising for self-determination. The panorama of abuse was heralded. The aim of these Web pages is to ascertain if any attempts have been made in abatement of violations of human rights over this period of time. Censures on the Indian administration have consistently mounted from the international community and Indian intellectuals, but it is the concerted opinion of this council that the violations have increased in intensity and frequency. In elucidating evidence, information has been extracted from publications coming out of India, and Jammu & Kashmir, and verbal statements from the breaved families.

The echoes of cries reverberate through the valleys of Kashmir, while the tempest of agony passes away, there is hope that one, all the people will wake up to Freedom and glory.

Categories of Human Right violations include:

(1) Repression of right of free speech and freedom of press.

(2) Repression against holding peaceful demonstrations.

(3) Ill treatment, torture and deaths in custody.

(4) Denial of civil liberties.

(5) Denial of right to a fair trial.

(6) Persecution, humiliation and denial of a right to secure life.

(7) Disappearances of people taken into custody.

(8) Violations of the privacy of homes.

(9) Opprobrious treatment of elderly.

(10) Ill treatment of children.

(11) Physical and sexual assault on women used as a 'weapon of combat'.

(12) Excessive force used by the members of the Indian security forces.

The news agencies covering Kashmir on a regular basis are BBC World Service, Voice of America, and ZeeTV reports from Press Trust of India, Associated Press, Reuters, United Press of India.

Friday prayers are an important tradition in Kashmir and speeches are made by leaders about religion or current events. On 24 November 1995 such an assembly in Darigam was sprayed with bullets, killing five people and injuring many others. In these conditions no member of the public can stand up and speak openly. The army laws in force forbid an assembly of four or more people at any place and at any time. It is common to find army officers making speeches after a search operation and warning members of public that they will be punished if they do not reveal the hideouts of the militants.

In October 1995, Mr Yasin Malik, Javed Mir and Shabir Shah, the leaders in Kashmir, were all arrested on different days, kept in custody for the day, then released , only to prevent them from making a speech at Hazratbal Shrine. This kind of practice is now a common feature in Kashmir. There is a sinister mure silence in all ranks, eating away their insides and holding back the cries of agony.

People are choked with emotion - Opinion Poll

The once chance that the people had to speak out was through a poll conducted by 'MODE', India's foremost public opinion organisation. This was published by the news magazine 'Outlook' on 18th October 1995. The results were remarkable; 77% said that "No solution within Indian Constitution", 90% said that "Human Right violations by Indian Security Forces are very high". This survey cannot spurious. It is India's own prestigious organisation which conducted the poll. The presence of military in the streets of Kashmir must be construed as repressive. Politician Bal Thackray called for the burning of the 'Outlook' magazine.

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