British MPs join Kashmiri diaspora’s call to condemn women’s rights violations by India in IIOJK


London: British lawmakers joined Kashmiri diaspora and their allies on International Women’s Day to urge Government of the UK to force India to halt its inhuman actions and end its occupation over Jammu and Kashmir.

Several British lawmakers joined Tehreek-e-Kashmir UK at 10 Downing Street to submit a petition to Prime Minister Boris Johnson urging his government to speak about human rights violations including violation of women’s rights in Indian Illegally occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK).

The petition, signed by British parliamentarians and the general public, includes reports prepared by various independent and non-governmental international organizations on the violence perpetrated by Indian occupying forces on Kashmiri women and urges Boris government to use its influence to halt Indian genocide of Kashmiris.

British lawmakers including Afzal Khan, Liam Byrne , Imran Hussain, Paul Blomfield, Gill Furniss, Muhammad Yasin, Khalid Mehmood, Tahir Ali and Yasmin Qureshi joined Kashmiri delegation led by Fahim Kayani, president Tehreek-e-Kashmir UK, besides Rehana Ali, Sheni Hamid and Soraya Boyd and Raja Muhammad Azad.

“Every day, Indian occupying forces violate the dignity of our daughters, sisters and mothers in IIOJK,” said Fahim Kayani, president of TeK UK.

He said the presence of one million Indian troops in a foreign territory i.e. IIOJK is itself violation of all human and fundamental rights of that territory.

“Indian forces have committed innumerable cases of molestation and other anti-women acts. This occupying force has turned in to a beast that is engaged in mass acts of violence against Kashmiri women,” Kayani said.

British lawmakers called on Prime Minister Boris Johnson to use his good offices and hold India accountable.

“The UK has the power and influence to halt Indian actions in Kashmir and allow Kashmiris to decide their political fate,” they said.

Moreover, the Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) have expressed serious concern over the ill treatment meted out to the human rights defenders in India and Indian illegally occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJK).

The MEPs have expressed this concern in a letter written to the Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other top constitutional authorities in India.

They maintained that the activists have been “jailed for their peaceful work, targeted under anti-terror laws, labelled as terrorists, and [are] facing increasing restrictions”.

The MEPs highlighted three particular cases: the arrest of 16 activists and academics in the Elgar Parishad case, the continued arrest of 13 activists and students in connection with the protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) and the detention of Kashmiri activist Khurram Parvez.

In the letter, the MEPs noted the systemic use of the draconian law like Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) to quash dissent, which has been widely condemned including by sitting and retired Supreme Court judges.

The MEPs said they are concerned about the use of “illegal spyware and/or the planting of key digital evidence on the accused’s computers”, citing reports of the use of Pegasus spyware and Netwire to target some of the Elgar Parishad case.

They demanded the immediate and unconditional release of all those detained without basis as “reprisal for their human rights work”.