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'Cross-border terrorism, gory record of persecution of minorities': India tears into Pak at UNHRC

India on Tuesday highlighted the issue of cross-border terrorism emanating from Pakistan at the United Nations Human Right Council where Islabamad raked up abrogation of Article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir and subsequent restrictions in the state. 

New Delhi also exposed Pakistan on its gory record of "persecution and elimination of religious and ethnic minorities."

Preventive measures in Kashmir needed due to credible threats of cross-border terrorism

In response to Pak Foreign Minister's statement at the 42nd session of the UNHRC in Geneva, India said the neighbouring nation "conducts cross-border terrorism as a form of ‘alternate diplomacy’."

Vijay Thakur Singh, Secretary (East) in the Ministry of External Affairs who led the Indian delegation, said, "The world is aware that this fabricated narrative comes from the epicentre of global terrorism, where ring leaders were sheltered for years."

The world must "speak out" since "silence only emboldens terrorists and their supporters, she said. 

Giving the rationale of removing the special status to Jammu and Kashmir, Thakur said Indian government's "progressive policies will now be fully applicable to our citizens in Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh."

"We wish to reiterate that this sovereign decision, like other legislations passed by Parliament, is entirely internal to India. No country can accept interference in its internal affairs, certainly not India," she said.

She said it was a "sovereign decision, entirely internal to India" and the decision by Indian parliament enjoys "widespread support".

On restrictions in the region in the aftermath of August 5 decision, she said temporary preventive measures were needed "to ensure security in the face of credible threats of cross-border terrorism" and they are being eased. 

Important to note that India also mentioned the National Register for Citizens or NRC being implemented in Assam in the "country statement" at UN HRC with secretary east saying "its implementation will comply with Indian Law and democratic traditions."

Aasia Bibi, Jagjit Kaur's names echo in UNHRC chamber

In its right of reply at the UN HRC, India hit out at Pak FM as it raised the plight of minorities in the neighbouring country.

First Secretary at the Permanent Mission of India to UN, Vimarsh Aryan, said, "Pakistani rhetoric will not distract international attention from Pakistan’s persecution and elimination of religious and ethnic minorities – be it the Christians, Sikhs, Shias, Ahmadiyas and Hindus."

India gave examples of Aasia Bibi, a Christian woman who was incarcerated for years under blasphemy laws, and Abdul Shakoor a the 82-year-old Ahmadiya, who was charged under the Anti-Terrorism Act for selling books. New Delhi also gave the example of minor Sikh girl Jagjit Kaur who was abducted and converted just few weeks back in Pakistan's Punjab province.

India's diplomat slammed Islamabad for raking Kashmir at the Geneva-based institution. 

"We are not surprised at Pakistan’s hysterical statements with false, fabricated narratives aimed to politicize and polarize this foru," Aryan said.

Adding, "Pakistan realises that our recent decision cuts the very ground from under its feet by creating obstacles in its continuing sponsorship of cross border terrorism against India"

"Some Pakistan leaders have even gone as far as to call for ‘Jihad’ and to encourage violence both inside Jammu and Kashmir and in third countries, in order to paint a picture of ‘genocide’ which even they know is far from reality," he further said. 

Calling Pakistan, "epicentre of global terrorism", Aryan said Islamabad "forgets that terrorism is the worst form of human rights abuse."

Its interesting to know India sent a diplomat from who hails from Jammu and Kashmir to respond Pakistan FM.

Earlier Pakistani Foreign minister SM Qureshi spoke at the council raised Kashmir, something that was expected. Calling New Delhi's removal of special status for Jammu and Kashmir "flagrant violation of several UN Security Council Resolutions" Qureshi, said, "India’s unilateral actions of 5th August 2019 of altering the status of Occupied Jammu & Kashmir, recognized as a disputed territory by the UN Security Council, are illegal under international law."

Later, in what was seem as an embarrassment to Pakistan, Qureshi referred to Jammu and Kashmir as “Indian State”, something that goes against the 70-year policy of Islamabad. 

He said, "India is trying to give an impression to the world that life has returned to normalcy. If the life has returned to normalcy, then I say, why don't they allow you, the international media, why don't they allow the international organisations, the NGOs, civil society organisations to go into the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir"

Pakistan also submitted a 115-page dossier to highlight the current situation in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir.

India Pakistan clash at UN HRC weeks after Pakistan-China planned to rake Kashmir at United Nations Security Council but could not do so because of lack of support from other members of the council like Russia, US, UK and France.