The response of the Indian state to the recommendations as laid down during the UPR3 in 2017 has come. The member countries like Pakistan, Switzerland, Bulgaria, Germany, Norway etc have recommended certain measures to be taken to improve the existing laws in India. Some countries like Pakistan and Germany had shown displeasure over the draconian laws like AFSPA that have been implemented in Kashmir in particular.
Indian state, like always, has responded in vague. It has again repeated to rectify some treaties like it had promised in the last two UPR’s. It has provided certain justification to the continual implementation of AFSPA in certain parts of India and in Kashmir.
India in its response has justified the presence of AFSPA by playing the card of national security interests and linked it with terrorism. However, we maintain that this is a ploy to dodge the repeal of AFSPA.
The Universal Periodic Review (UPR) is a process which involves a review of the human rights records of all UN Member States. The UPR is a State-driven process, under the auspices of the Human Rights Council, which provides the opportunity for each State to declare what actions they have taken to improve the human rights situations in their countries and to fulfill their human rights obligations. As one of the main features of the Council, the UPR is designed to ensure equal treatment for every country when their human rights ssituations are assessed.
The UPR was created through the UN General Assembly on 15 March 2006 by resolution 60/251, which established the Human Rights Council itself. It is a cooperative process which, by October 2011, has reviewed the human rights records of all 193 UN Member States. Currently, no other universal mechanism of this kind exists. The ultimate aim of this mechanism is to improve the human rights situation in all countries and address human rights violations wherever they occur.
APDP commemorates the struggles of the victim families to seek justice. APDP wants the world community to pressurize the Indian state to look into the systemic and systematic enforced disappearances and bring the perpetuators to the book and punish them.
APDP also commemorates thanks the people of Jammu Kashmir for supporting it for the pursuance of justice. Without the peoples help in the movement, the continuing of the demand for justice would not have been possible.
Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons (APDP) welcomes the recent human rights report of United Nations on Kashmir published on 14th June 2018 by the Office of High Commissioner of Human Rights (OHCHR) . The OHCHR report highlighted the gross human rights violations done by the military apparatus of India in Kashmir, including enforced disappearances, unlawful killings of the civilians, rapes, torture, unlawful detentions and maiming of civilians by the forces besides other things. The OHCHR recommended to India to take a serious note of these violations and stop them.
Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons (APDP) condemns the brutal killing of the senior journalist Shujaat Bukhari and stands in solidarity with the bereaved family and extends deep condolences to the family. Attack on journalists is unacceptable and deeply worrying. In the past also, many journalists have been attacked and killed or maimed in Kashmir.
On the occasion of the monthly sit-in on 10th April, Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons (APDP) commemorates the struggle of Dilshada Sheikh, an active member of APDP, who passed away on 31 March, 2018.
Dilshada Sheikh who lived in Zakura, Srinagar, was the ‘half-widow’ of Bashir Ahmad Sheikh. Bashir Ahmad Sheikh was a daily wage laborer, who was subjected to enforced disappearance after being abducted by Border Security Force (BSF) of the Indian Army in Lal Chowk, Srinagar on the 16th of June, 1992.
With immense grief we regret to inform you that Dilshada Sheikh, a member of Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons (APDP), passed away Saturday morning.
Dilshada Sheikh who lived in Zakura, Srinagar, was the half-widow of Bashir Ahmad Sheikh and mother of their two sons. Bashir Ahmad Sheikh was a casual laborer who was subjected to an enforced disappearance after being picked up by Border Security Force (BSF) of the Indian Army in Lal Chowk on the 16th of June, 1992.
On the occasion of the International Women’s day, Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons (APDP) commemorates the struggles of Kashmiri women against the repression of the Indian state. Since the outbreak of counter-insurgency, the Indian state subjected thousands of Kashmiri men to enforced disappearances which left behind hundreds of widows and their children and ageing mothers.
International Human Rights Day is observed every year on the 10th of December, across the world. It marks the commemoration of the day when the United Nations General Assembly in 1948 adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). The Universal Declaration of Human Rights along with the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights set out the civil, political, cultural, economic and social rights which are inalienable and unconditional. This was done in the event of decolonisation happening in the developing world for people, to assure them their right to self determination.
December 10th also coincides with the monthly sit-in, that APDP conducts on 10th of every month for remembering our disappeared, to find their whereabouts and seek justice for them and their families. APDP on this day reiterates its demand for setting up an independent judicial commission for investigating into the cases of Enforced Disappearances and of ratifying the International Convention of Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearances and the Convention against Torture.
In the recent past, the practice of involuntary disappearance has resurfaced in Kashmir. The latest case being one of Manzoor Ahmed Khan, resident of Devar, Lolab, Kupwara; he was, according to the family, abducted by the by the 27 –RR of Indian Army on 31 August, 2017 and has not returned home since. APDP condemns the abduction and enforced disappearance and demands that an independent investigation be held on this and Manzoor to be returned immediately to his family.
On 10th of every month, the Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons (APDP) stages a silent sit-in protest in Srinagar against Enforced Disappearances in Jammu and Kashmir. As part of its programme, APDP is holding a sit in protest on 10th October 2017, at Partab Park, Srinagar.
On 30th August, world all over is observing the international day of enforced disappearances. Similarly APDP too will be observing it.
With the extensive militarisation that started in early nineties came the phenomenon of enforced disappearances. Under the Indian State’s militarization of Kashmir among other brutalities, enforced disappearances have been used as a tool to suppress the people and their voices.
The state not only denies the phenomena of enforced disappearances ,instead , it has legislated certain laws , like AFSPA , and provided full impunity to the perpetrators, thus protecting them , thereby creating hurdles in acquiring justice.
Nevertheless, APDP has been resisting this suppression for years now and has raised the issue of the enforced disappearances with the world community.
Under the Indian State’s militarization of Kashmir among other brutalities, enforced disappearances have been used as a tool to suppress the people and their voices. Nevertheless, APDP has been resisting this suppression for years now and has raised the issue of the enforced disappearances with the world community.
On 10th of every month, the Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons (APDP) stages a silent sit-in protest against Enforced Disappearances in Jammu and Kashmir. In a situation where India has not ratified the International Convention For Protection of all Persons From Enforced Disappearances and the vagueness of India’s Domestic Law that does not enumerate Enforced Disappearance as an offence, the challenges in pursuing legal struggle is insurmountable. There is an official state policy that ensures impunity to Indian Armed Forces and promotes silencing of the past. Indian State and its collaborators have added one more inquiry to the list of the number of inquiries conducted in the past. This inquiry we are told will be conducted into some cases of Killings at the hands of Indian Police and Armed forces during the July 2016 mass uprising. Such inquiries are nothing but a sad reminder of the fact that like other inquires in the past this inquiry will either end with no results or with results that exonerate the perpetrators through sham investigations, forged documents, tampering with forensic samples. During the ongoing uprising more than 100 civilians have been killed, about 1000 have been blinded or have sustained injuries in their eyes in the firing of pellets by Indian Armed Forces. In order to quell the protests and lower the morale and resolve of people, and to force an entire population into submission Kashmir has also witnessed a spree of mass arrests and detentions under the draconian Public Safety Act, 1978,.