Bengaluru, Aug 23: A Kashmiri Pandit forum today sought a probe by a central agency into activities of Amnesty International which, it alleged, has been selective in its approach and out to tarnish India's image and of its security forces and also sought a ban on the outfit in the state.
Amnesty had been slapped with sedition charges over the August 13 event it held as part of a campaign to seek justice for "victims of human rights violations" in Jammu and Kashmir, which took an ugly turn with heated exchange and alleged raising of pro-Kashmir 'Independence' and anti-Army slogans.
"The case should be handed over to a central agency for an impartial probe into activities of Amnesty International in India, which has been selective in its approach and out to tarnish the image of India and its security forces," Romesh Kumar Matto, chairman of Kashmiri Hindu Cultural Welfare Trust, said in a petition to state Home Minister G Parameshwara.
Mattoo also welcomed the minister's clarification that he had not given a clean chit to the rights advocacy group.
"Your statement that you were misquoted by the media has sent positive signals and upheld the impartial nature of successive governments on the issues of nation's security and integrity," Mattoo said.
Parameshwara yesterday had clarified that he had not given any clean chit to Amnesty International even as investigation in the case is underway. Mattoo said they were however "pained" over his earlier 'premature remarks' exonerating Amnesty of the responsibility even as police probe had not been completed.
He also demanded a ban on Amnesty International in Karnataka for holding such events "which are one sided and incite the general public" and said government should question heir intention and purpose of holding this event "at a time when Jammu and Kashmir is burning."
Mattoo said, "till date, Amnesty International has focused only on so-called human rights violations by armed forces in Kashmir and ignored the brutal killings of Kashmiri Pandits, security forces and role of terrorists in the valley."
He alleged that the tone and tenor of the entire programme here was directed against Indian government agencies and especially the Indian army. Mattoo also demanded that the NGO condemn the slogan shouting at the function and own up responsibility for it.
"It cannot take shelter under "freedom of speech" but at the same time ignore responsibilities under the constitution," he said. Mattoo also asked Parameshwara to expedite the process of identifying and picking up those who shouted Aazadi and anti national slogans and book them under law to prevent such incidents in future.
The Trust said the event should not be politicised as the anti-India slogan shouting falls purely under the domain of nation's security and integrity.