Enforced disappearances Additionally, disappearances and extra-judicial killings are also attributed to armed counter-insurgency renegades (“ikwans”), primarily former militants who have either surrendered or changed sides, used by security forces in the region to intimidate civilians in various ways particularly those attempting to access justice and realize constitutionally guaranteed human rights.
Unofficial estimates put the number of disappeared persons between 1989 and 2006 at anywhere between 8000-10,000. A majority of those disappeared are young men, including minors, others include people of all ages, professions and backgrounds, many of whom have no connection with the armed opposition groups operating in Kashmir.
Although India signed the International Convention for Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearances in 2007, it has failed to ratify the Convention and only a fraction of the cases on disappearances have been investigated.
Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons (APDP) is a collective of relatives of victims of enforced and involuntary disappearances in Kashmir. Disappearances often end in extra-judicial killings or death by torture. The APDP was formed in 1994 to organize efforts to seek justice and get information on the whereabouts of missing family members. It presently consists of family members of about one thousand victims. APDP actively campaigns for an end to the practice and international crime of involuntary and enforced disappearances at local, national and international platforms. Members of the APDP have been engaged in documenting enforced disappearances in Kashmir since 1989 and have collected information on over one thousand such cases, so for. On the 10th of each month families of the disappeared come together under the aegis of APDP to hold a public protest in Srinagar to commemorate the disappearance of their loved ones and seek answers from the state about the whereabouts of the missing persons.
APDP continues to face major challenges in meeting its objectives due to acts of omission and commission by state agencies. This constitutes serious breaches of fundamental rights guaranteed under the Indian Constitution as well as rights recognized in the Declaration Rights of Human Rights Defenders and marks the Indian state’s failure to create conditions to ensure the enjoyment of all human rights and freedoms.