Altaf calls for revocation of anti-Kashmir laws

By Asim Hussain

ISLAMABAD: Veteran Hurriyat leader and Chairman Kashmir Institute of International Relations (KIIR) Altaf, Hussain Wani Sunday appealed the UN Secretary General, Antonio Gutters to mount pressure on India to revoke all anti-Kashmir-laws including new domicile law, which violates the United Nations resolutions.
He particularly mentioned the resolutions that provide basis and structure for final disposition of the state through a fair and free plebiscite conducted under the auspices of United Nations. In a communique addressed to the UN secretary General, the KIIR chief expressed his grave concern over new set of laws introduced by the government of India for Jammu and Kashmir.
Terming these anti-Kashmir laws as a flagrant violation of international covenants Wani urged the UN Secretary General, High Commissioner for Human Rights Michele Bachelet, Human Rights Council President Elisabeth Tichy-Fisslberger, member states and civil society to impress upon India to revoke all laws which violate the United Nations resolutions of August 13, 1948 and January 5, 1949.
Referring to international covenants, which strictly restrict and restrain occupying states from altering demographic character of occupied area, Wani said, “the state of Jammu and Kashmir is an internationally recognized dispute between India and Pakistan and falls under Geneva Convention and Hague Regulations of 1907, which prohibit occupying states from altering the demographic character of the occupied area†.
Being a signatory to the International Covenant on Economic, Social and cultural rights, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and United Nations resolutions on Kashmir India was legally and morally bound to protect the rights of Kashmiris defined in these agreements†, Wani said.
“Indian desire to change the demography of the state has been operational since the day when it forcibly occupied the territory of Jammu and Kashmir in 1947,†he said while highlighting the dangerous designs of the Indian government.
“The physical elimination of the Muslim population in Jammu was formally started in 1947 followed by Indian military incursion in Kashmir†, he said adding that killing and targeting Muslim youth and manipulating of census figures and other coercive measures were used as an effective tool to change the demography of the state.
Shedding light on Kashmir’s age-old distinct identity the communique said, “Indian Occupied Jammu and Kashmir is home to 12.5 million people and comprises of 22 districts. Of these 22 districts, there are 17 Muslim-majority districts – 10 in Kashmir, six in Jammu and one in Ladakh, three Hindu-majority districts one Buddhist-majority district†.
Regarding maneuvering of statistics relating to the Muslim population by India in occupied Kashmir, the communique said, “The percentage of the Muslim population in Indian occupied was nearly the same as that of 1961 whereas the percentage of the Muslim majority in India has increased from 10.70% in 1961 to 14.23%.â€
The main cause behind the decline of the Muslim population in Kashmir he said was genocide and ethnic cleansing carried out by India against Kashmiris. Wani said that the constitutional onslaught by India clearly shows that to settle outsiders in Kashmir has been sole motive behind the Indian government’s plan to revoke Article 370 of the Indian constitution.