Kashmir is a sad story of non-implemented UN resolutions and broken promises.
Interestingly, the theme of World Human Rights day 2015, commemorated by the United Nations, was: Our Rights, Our Freedoms, Always. The theme instantly gave a ray of hope to forlorn Kashmiris as they read it as UN’s endorsement of right to freedom. It gave Kashmiris hope that finally UN will take notice of gross human rights violations happening in Kashmir.
The timing of UN’s message is encouraging given the rise of hate speech against religious and racial minorities across the world. It is also important as states are systematically justifying violation of rights in the name of “fight against terrorism”.
Meanwhile in Kashmir, the killing of unarmed persons especially youth, enforced disappearances, mass graves, terrorizing population by the use of indiscriminate force, denial of freedom of assembly and protest has become a routine.
Instead of making laws, the need is to discuss why laws like Armed Forces Special Powers Act (AFSPA), Disturbed Areas Act (DAA) and Public Safety Act (PSA) are in force in Kashmir.
These draconian laws, considered misfit in modern set-up by many commentators, give legal protection and immunity to men in uniform in Kashmir. There are thousands of instances where these men in uniform are found directly responsible for human rights violations.
These laws give state absolute authority to deny citizens of their basic human rights. A person can be detained on suspicion for years without any trail under these laws.
The international human rights day infuses in us the confidence of our struggle being just and based on the universally agreed principles of justice, equality and fundamental freedoms of human being.