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Army chief denies U.N High Commissioner’s report of Human Rights on violations in Kashmir

Army Chief Gen Bipin Rawat on Wednesday denied the United Nations High Commissioner’s report on Human Rights violations in Kashmir saying human rights record of the Indian Army is ‘above board.’

“Some of these reports are motivated. We don’t need to give any importance to these reports,” Rawat said on Wednesday.

The UN report called for an international investigation into alleged human rights violations in Jammu and Kashmir.

The Ministry of External Affairs had earlier reacted sharply to the report calling it mischievous and misleading. “We question the intent in bringing out such a report. It is a selective compilation of largely unverified information. It is overtly prejudiced and seeks to build a false narrative. The report violates India’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. The entire state of Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India”, said an official spokesperson.

Both the BJP and Congress reprimaned the report. Echoing the government, senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel described the UNHRC report misleading and extended support to the government in rejecting any interference in the internal affairs of the country.

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The report noted Indian security forces used excessive force that led to unlawful killings and a very high number of injuries citing civil society estimates that up to 145 civilians were killed by the security forces between mid-July 2016 and the end of March 2018, with up to 20 other civilians killed by armed groups in the same period.

“Impunity for human rights violations and lack of access to justice are key human rights challenges in the state of Jammu and Kashmir,” the report said, noting that the Armed Forces (Jammu and Kashmir) Special Powers Act 1990 (AFSPA) and the Jammu and Kashmir Public Safety Act 1978 (PSA) have “created structures that obstruct the normal course of law, impede accountability and jeopardize the right to remedy for victims of human rights violations.”


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