Kashmir has interminably remained a striking question for the security of South Asia as saga of miseries of Kashmiris in Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu & Kashmir continues for over the past 75 years. Unfortunately, International community continues to turn a blind eye to Indian draconian laws which has made valley imitate a suffocating prison. India’s unlawful action on 5 Aug, 2019, to abrogate Articles 370 and 35-A has presented international institutes and human rights organization with yet another challenge. This unilateral step by BJP’s government is in blatant contravention of UNSC resolution which prevents from bringing any material change to the disputed territory.
Following the abrogation of these laws, the barbarism of Modi government reached new height as it deployed nearly 180,000 additional paramilitary troops in the valley, with a sole aim to intimidate and suppress the population. Complete communication blackout and curfew was imposed which continued after the lapse of six months and later continued on the pretext of Covid – 19. Amnesty international published a report titled “We are being punished by the law: Three years since the abrogation of Article 370 in Jammu & Kashmir” which documented interrogation, travel bans and illegal detention of journalists in IIOJK, the report says that at least 27 journalists, particularly those who are critical of India or highlight human rights abuses have been arrested under Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) by the Indian authorities since August 2019.
Similarly, in February 2022 Human Rights Watch condemned the intensified crackdown on the independent media and noted the “increasing harassment, threats, and prosecutions of journalists and human rights activists” in Kashmir. Taking Full advantage of the laws such as Armed Forces Special Powers Act and Public Safety Act which provides immunity to security forces, the Indian security forces have been on an open rampage. Since August 5, nearly 4000 people that include minors have been taken into custody and are being kept in jails outside the state. According to an estimate, there exist nearly 841 pending petitions challenging these illegal detentions. In a continuous attempt to scrape off the Muslim character of Kashmir and convert Muslim majority into a minority, BJP issued “Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation (an adaptation of state law) Order” on 31 Mach 2020. According to this newly introduced domicile law, those who have resided in Illegally Indian occupied Jammu and Kashmir for a period of 15 years and students having spent seven years and appeared in class 10 or 12 examinations, will now be eligible to become a permanent resident of the state. These Policies depict the true fascist nature of its BJP government.
The countries which showcase themselves as a bearers of human rights continue to remain silent in the face of continued Indian atrocities in Jammu and Kashmir. Altering the demographic map of the region, human rights violations, illegal arrests of the journalists under sedition charges clearly depicts the malicious intentions of the BJP government to marginalize the Kashmiri population and undermine their say in the overall decision-making process. However, Delhi’s policies to undermine the determination of the Kashmiris has failed miserably as it has only intensified the resentment among the population and deepened their resolve. Pakistan has been pursuing active diplomacy to highlight Kashmir issue at various international platform but unfortunately the current situation in Kashmir presents a gruesome picture which requires more tangible steps. In an attempt to showcase normalcy in the region and legitimize its brutal occupation in J&K, India is planning to hold G20 moot in Srinagar which stands in clear violation and disregard to globally recognised ‘disputed’ region. International community needs to come forward to take note of India’s brutality in the region and call for resolution in accordance to UN resolution.