SRINAGAR: Kashmir Centre for Social and Development Studies (KCSDS) has appealed the Secretary Generals of the United Nations and Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC) to visit the state of Jammu and Kashmir that got devastated in floods and take measures for flowing international humanitarian assistance for its reconstruction and rehabilitation.
In a Round Table Conference chaired by Prof. Hameedah Nayeem, the members of various civil society formations, social activists, business leaders and Kashmir Diaspora emphasised the need for global assistance to coup up with the magnitude of the disaster. The members expressed their deep concern over the disinterest and disinclination exhibited by GOI in accepting international aid from the United Nations and various countries thereby downplaying the catastrophe and sufferings of the millions of affected people.
Speaking at the conference, President Kashmir Bar Association Mian Abdul Qayoom said that the victims of flood fury have a right of access to humanitarian aid and assistance in international convention and 1993-Vienna declaration pertaining to disaster management in any part of the world. He advised the civil society exercise the options of taking the issue to courts of Justice including international court of Justice in Hague in case GOI continues to refuse international aid and assistance,
Renowned Professor of Medicine in United States, Dr.Khalid J. Qazi stated that no country in the world can claim to have capacity to disasters as such India’s expressed convention of accepting international aid is not tenable. Dr. Khalid narrated the impediments faced in custom clearance for the aid package sent for flood victims though a recognised NGO, by Kashmiri Diaspora in the United States. He said that the heart of Kashmir Diaspora beats for the flood sufferers back home and they will be striving for sending more relief and assistance for them which was also endorsed by Dr. Rouf Mir another noted US based Kashmiri medico.
Irfan Shahmiri heading US based NGO Chinar International stated that giving the magnitude of catestrophie, GOI never started working on a plan for relief or rehabilitation. He wanted to know the fate of PMs relief fund for Kashmir and stressed distribution of such fund through credible NGOs working on the ground. He also demanded release and allowing of FCRA for aid agencies involved in reconstruction and rehabilitation.
Former Financial Commissioner Mohammad Shafi Pandit emphasised on a role of a strong civil society for ensuring speedy revival of J&K’s economy.
Tafazul Hussain made a detailed case for rebuilding of J&K economy and presented a road map of six pillers for its restoration which included expediating GOI package, support from MNCs, Corporate and PSUs, free funds flow from banks, debt-waivers and interest subventions, international aid and coordination amoung business community.
Noted Physician Dr, G.Q Allaqaband asked for proper documentation of all that is required in reconstruction and rehabilitation and pleaded for constituting a united advocacy body.
Dr. Javid Iqbal presented a detailed account of current fiscal outlay of J&K government as well as GOI which proves that both the governments lack capacity to accommodate with the requirement in reconstruction.
Earlier initiating the proceedings, Prof. Hameedah Nayeem underlined the need for organising the Round Table Conference on vital subject of “ International Cooperation in disaster management” She said that multilateral agencies like World Bank and Asian Development Bank shall have to be deeply involved for providing soft loans apart from the assistance from foreign countries and agencies to rebuild the disaster hit state of J&K.
Among others who participating in the thought provoking deliberations included Mohammad Ashraf Mir, Advocate G.N Shaheen, Adv. Arshad Andrabi, Abdul Rehman, Advocate S.S Bashir, Amjad Khan, Z. G Mohammad, Dr. Mubeen Shah, Farooq Mir, Zahoor Ahmad Malik, Rouf Tramboo,and Shakeel Qalander.