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Kashmir’s leading human rights activist, Khurram Parvez arrested in midnight raid

Crescent International


By arresting the leading human rights activist in Indian occupied Kashmir, India wants to hide the ugly reality of its crimes against the Kashmiri people. This will onl intensify the determination of the Kashmiri people to overthrow the yoke of Hindu hegemony and occupation. No occupation has lasted forever; India's will certainly not last too long either. Indian crimes in Kashmir may result in the disintegration of India itself.

Srinagar, crescent-online.net
Friday September 16, 2016, 09:37 DST

In another act of blatant illegality, the Indian occupation forces have arrested Kashmir’s leading human rights activist, Khurram Parvez. In a raid carried out just past midnight today (12:30 am), Parvez was arrested from his house in Srinagar without a formal arrest warrant or notification.

He is currently being held in Kothi Bagh Police Station in Srinagar but has not been provided with any written document, court order or the reason for detention.

This violates his right to information, and legal counsel.

Parvez is the Programme Coordinator of Jammu and Kashmir Coalition of Civil Society (JKCCS) and its spokesperson. He is also Chairperson of the Asian Federation Against Involuntary Disappearances, a group of 13 non-governmental organizations from ten Asian countries that campaign on the issue of enforced disappearances.

The JKCCS has meticulously document human rights abuses by the occupation forces in Indian Occupied Kashmir including forced disappearances, mass graves and rape of Kashmir women.

Parvez’s arrest today follows his detention two days earlier (September 14) at the New Delhi international airport for nearly two hours during which he was interrogated by airport security staff that almost certainly included Indian intelligence agents.

He was barred from traveling to Geneva, Switzerland where he was scheduled to attend the 33rd UN Human Rights Council Session to brief UN organizations, including the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, as well as representatives of foreign governments on the atrocities committed by Indian occupation forces in Jammu and Kashmir.

These have again intensified in the wake of the extrajudicial execution of a young charismatic Kashmir freedom fighter, Burhan Wani on the night of July 8. He was barely 22 but because of his daring operations, he had earned the title of Kashmir’s Robin Hood.

So popular was Wani that the following day (July 9), more than 200,000 people poured into the streets, in defiance of curfew, to attend his funeral prayers. The Indian occupation forces shot and killed another eight persons and injured scores of others.

Since July 9, nearly 100 people mainly Kashmiri youth have been murdered by the occupation forces. At least 8,000 have been injured according to reports carried by AFP as well as Reuters. And in a front-page story in the New York Times (August 29), it was reported that at least 570 Kashmiri youth have been blinded as a result of occupation troops using pellet guns.

The JKCCS has documented these and other atrocities by the occupation forces that India, the self-proclaimed largest democracy in the world, does not want the world to know.

In a July 21 interview with the Indian web portal, Scroll.in, Parvez had posed the question: “Do you need 700,000 soldiers to fight 150 militants?” in response to Indian army claims that there were only 150 militants in Indian Occupied Kashmir.

Parvez’s detention is a violation of the internationally recognized and non-abrogatable civil and political rights. His arrest and detention are an attempt by India to intimidate Parvez from continuing his crucial human rights work.

This desperate and ultimately futile attempt exposes India for what it is: a fascist State that has no regard for human rights, especially those in Kashmir where the people have suffered a brutal occupation since October 1947.

In response to a petition launched in July and signed by 12,846 people so far, the UN Human Rights Council was asked to investigate Indian human rights violation in Kashmir.

During its session in Geneva on September 13, the UN Human Rights Commissioner, Zeid Raad al-Hussein told the Human Rights Council that he had received a letter from the Government of Pakistan on September 9 formally inviting a team from his office to visit Azad Kashmir but only in tandem with a mission to the Indian side.

“I have yet to receive a formal letter from the government of India. I therefore request here and publicly, from the two governments, access that is unconditional to both sides of the Line of Control,” he said.

India has refused to allow the UN Human Rights team to visit Indian occupied Kashmir.

Parvez’s visit to Geneva to address the UN Human Rights Council would have provided firsthand information to expose India’s crimes and the ugly reality in Kashmir.

Clearly, India’s Hindu rulers and its unruly brutal army are afraid of truth.


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