Month: August 2015
In occupied Kashmir, Indian troops in their unabated state terrorism have subjected thousands of Kashmiris to custodial disappearance during the last twenty-six years and the families of the victims have no information about their whereabouts.
According to the data released by the Research Section of the Kashmir Media Service on the occasion of the International Day of Disappeared Persons, today, over 10,000 Kashmiris have vanished in the custody after they were picked up by the troops and police. The report maintained that thousands of unnamed graves had been discovered in the territory and the human rights activists feared that these graves could be of the disappeared Kashmiris.
Meanwhile, several protest demonstrations were held in Srinagar to mark the day. One such event organized by the Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons was held at Pratap Park in Srinagar. Many people including APHC leader Javaid Ahmad Mir and relatives of thousands of enforced disappeared persons participated in the protest. The APDP leader, Parveena Ahangar led the protest. Another demonstration led by renowned human rights defender, Muhammad Ahsan Untoo was held at Press Enclave in Srinagar. Children and relatives of the disappeared persons were holding placards inscribed with slogans seeking whereabouts of their dear ones.
The All Parties Hurriyet Conference Chairman, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and other Hurriyet leaders including Hakeem Abdur Rasheed, Muhammad Yousuf Naqash, Syed Bashir Andrabi, Zafar Akbar Butt and Bilal Siddiqi in their statements sought intervention by international human rights organizations to help trace whereabouts of thousands of innocent disappeared persons.
The Jammu and Kashmir Peoples Freedom League and Jammu and Kashmir Peoples League in their statements issued in Srinagar condemned the use of lethal pellet guns by Indian government against peaceful protesters in the territory.
A report by a Delhi-based rights watchdog, Human Rights Law Network said that more than 700 minors had been arrested under draconian black law in the territory since March 2013. The report added that the arrests were in clear violation of India’s own constitution, which prohibits the detention of teenagers under the Act.
On the other hand, the forum led by the veteran Hurriyet leader, Syed Ali Gilani upon completion of one year of devastating flood in the occupied territory in a statement issued in Srinagar, today, denounced the authorities for doing nothing for rehabilitation of the flood affected people.
According to media sources, these minors have been booked under the draconian Public Safety Act (PSA) in a clear violation of the amendment on 28th March 2013 bringing into effect the Jammu & Kashmir (Care and Protection of Children) Act 2013 which bars the detention of persons under the age of 18 years under PSA.
The report titled ‘Awareness On Juvenile Justice, Jammu and Kashmir also decried the lack of measure including absence of juvenile justice board and child welfare committees in Kashmir, which it said was a clear violation of the Juvenile Justice Act.
It noted that apprehended juveniles are put in jail instead of handling them in a child-friendly manner, which was a brazen overrule of law.
The reports also denounced the treatment and trial of juveniles, which it said involved beating and incarceration against numerous decisions of the court.
It lamented the absence of Juvenile Home for girls. “The lone operating juvenile home in Kashmir is only for boys,” the report said, adding not only there is no existing juvenile home for girls but the juvenile home is also not equipped to handle the cases of girl juveniles. MS—1A
OVER 10,000 KASHMIRIS DISAPPEARED IN INDIAN TROOPS’ CUSTODY
Srinagar, August 30 (Kashmir Voice): In occupied Kashmir, Indian troops in their unabated state terrorism have subjected thousands of Kashmiris to custodial disappearance during the last twenty-six years and the families of the victims have no information about their whereabouts.
According to the data released by the research section of the Kashmir Media Service on the occasion of the International Day of Disappeared Persons, today, over 10,000 Kashmiris have vanished in the custody after they were picked up by the troops and police.
The report maintained that thousands of unnamed graves had been discovered in the territory and the human rights activists feared that these graves could be of the disappeared Kashmiris.
Meanwhile the All Parties Hurriyet Conference (APHC) Chairman, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq in a statement issued in Srinagar urged the international human rights organizations to play role in finding out whereabouts of thousands of innocent Kashmiris disappeared in custody of Indian troops and police during the last over two decades.
Other Hurriyet leaders including Hakeem Abdur Rasheed, Muhammad Yousuf Naqash, Syed Bashir Andrabi and Bilal Sidiqi in their statements, said that it was the responsibility of the world community to unearth the facts about over 10,000 disappeared Kashmiris and more than 9,000 unnamed and mass graves discovered in the occupied territory.
In occupied Kashmir, emotions ran high at the screening of documentary “Khoon Di Barav” (Blood leaves its trail) highlighting the sufferings of relatives of people who have been subjected to enforced disappearance by the Indian forces.
According to media sources, the screening was several times interrupted by pro-freedom and anti-India slogans as the audience braved heat, humidity and cramped space to patiently watch the 90-minute documentary. The documentary by filmmaker Iffat Fatima, screened at Hotel Lalla Rukh in Srinagar, brought some to tears and others to the point of rage as case after case the film showed what the families of disappeared persons have gone through during the two decades of turmoil.
The documentary started with Shameema, whose husband was taken away by the forces personnel never to be returned. In the dream Shameema, who according to Fatima, is still below 40, refuses to recognize her husband asking him to go for blood test to prove his identity. The documentary follows the similar journey of the families who have gone through the tragedy. The documentary, which took Fatima nine years to make, has painstakingly documented the entire history of the cases of disappeared persons and how Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons (APDP) was formed.
Fatima had to face number of obstacles in filming the documentary as at one point her crew was detained and footage deleted by the forces personnel. In many shots troops are asking the cameraman to stop shooting. “We have collectively gone through the tragedy and with this movie my objective is to relive and witness the trauma once again,” said Fatima.
Capturing the essence of famed Kashmiri dark humour, the films gives glimpses of how resilient people have braved the tough times. In one shot when Hajra Begum is asked by a neighbour about the gathering, she informs him that actually there is an offer today that he who gets killed will get Rs one lakh as compensation.
Those who attended the screening included poet Zareef Ahmad Zareef, producer actor Aamir Bashir, author Mirza Waheed and other prominent members of the civil society.
According to media sources, in a letter addressed to Superintendent of Tihar Jail, Lone demanded transfer of his case as the so-called offences in the charge sheet were committed in Kashmir, which comes under the local jurisdiction as per law.
Further, he said that the trial in the Delhi court was depriving him of availing a proper legal defense and separation from his newly wedded spouse and old aged parents is adding to multiple health issues especially depression and stress.
According to media sources, the JKPFL General Secretary, Muhammad Ramzan Khan in a statement issued in Srinagar said that Kashmir had become a police state where men in uniform had leashed a reign of terror among the freedom-loving people.
He also condemned the arrest spree of youth and slapping of draconian Public Safety Act (PSA). Every act of brutality including massacre, rape, torture and disappearances goes unabated as Indian forces enjoy impunity under the draconian laws, he deplored.
Muhamamd Ramzan Khan appealed to the world human rights organizations and the United Nations to intervene for a complete ban on pellet guns in the occupied territory by the Indian forces.
In occupied Kashmir, the first custodial disappearance in Kashmir took place in 1992, and sparked a wave of similar disappearances that only ended eight years ago, it was said in report appeared in an English daily of the territory.
According to media sources, in the majority of cases, the report says, it was the wives who were left behind, forever labelled Kashmir’s “half-widows” and never to know whether their husbands were dead or alive.
In the fifteen years that intervened, the situation of these half-widows was nothing short of deplorable. Even today, these women feel the wounds of conflict. The disappearance of their husbands remains a mystery, and many hold on to hope that their husbands will return someday.
Begum Fatima, who recently turned 64, says that her husband had left home in the morning – and that was the last she had seen of him: “I don’t know where he had intended to go that morning, and where he went, or if anyone took him. It was in the middle of the time when men were taken into custody, and I presume what happened to him. It has been over 20 years now and I’ve heard nothing of his whereabouts. I don’t even know if he’s alive.”
“For a while, I searched for him. When my sons were old enough, they joined me. A point came when it was all too much – to wake up each morning and to chart out a new place to go look for him – it was overwhelming, tiring and no longer possible. Our lives had to move on if we needed to survive. Legal cases and justice was impossible – we had no money, and we are all illiterate. Who will tell us if the lawyers are really helping us or taking money and doing nothing?”
A study by the Jammu and Kashmir Coalition of Civil Societies (JKCCS) estimated that there were approximately 1500 half-widows. Titled “Half widow, Half Wife? Responding to Gendered Violence in Kashmir“. The report also indicates that there are mass graves in which the victims could be buried, and urges the identification of remains found in these graves.
According to media sources, one such event led by renowned human rights defender, Muhammad Ahsan Untoo was held at Press Enclave in Srinagar, which was largely participated by children and relatives of the disappeared persons. They were holding placards inscribed with “Waiting For Abbu To Celebrate The Coming Eid”, “Is Anybody Listening Where Are Our Dear Ones” and “End The Desperate Waiting. “
On this occasion Mohammad Ahsan Untoo urged the world community to trace the disappeared persons as it has turned into a human tragedy now. He further said that dissenting voices were subjected to enforced disappearances by India to muzzle the genuine voices. They used it as a brutal weapon to silence the voice of people. He called upon the world community to prevail upon India to disclose whereabouts of thousands of disappeared persons.
Meanwhile, the Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons staged a sit-in protest at Pratap Park in Srinagar to mark the International Day of Disappeared Persons, today. Many people including APHC leader Javaid Ahmad Mir and Youth Awami Action Committee President Sofi Mushtaq Ahmad and relatives of thousands of Kashmiris who have been subjected to enforced disappearance by Indian police and troops during the past twenty-six years participated in the sit-in.
Addressing on the occasion Javaid Ahmad Mir said besides 10,000 enforced disappearances illegal detentions, forced labor, property damage, and other forms of human rights violations remain a common practice in Kashmir.
The demonstrators carrying pictures of their missing relatives demanded of the puppet authorities to disclose their whereabouts. The APDP leader, Parveena Ahangar led the protest.