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End lockdown in Kashmir, ensure due appeals process in Assam: UNHRC

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Geneva, Sep 10: Delivering the opening statement, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet urged India to end the lockdown in Kashmir and also restore basic communication services.

Bachelet said, " I am deeply concerned about the impact of the recent actions by the Government of India on the human rights in Kashmir, including restrictions on the internet communications and peaceful assembly, and the detention of local political leaders and activists. She was addressing the 42nd session of the Human Rights Council.

End lockdown in Kashmir, ensure due appeals process in Assam: UNHRC

I have appealed particularly to India to ease the current lockdowns or curfews, to ensure people's access to basic services. It is important that the people of Kashmir are consulted and engaged in any decision making processes that have an impact on their future, she also said.

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    She also raised the Assam NRC issue and said that the exercise has caused anxiety to people. I appeal to the government to ensure due process during the appeals process, prevent deportation or detention, and ensure that the people are protected from statelessness, she further added.

    India is all ready with a counteroffensive, with Pakistan set to move a resolution on the Kashmir issue at the UNHRC. The Pakistan delegation is being led by its foreign minister, Shah Mahmood Qureshi.

    To set the narrative against Pakistan, the external affairs minister, S Jaishankar has already engaged several countries. India has decided to go on the counteroffensive and raise the human rights violations that Pakistan has been committing. The condition of the minorities in Pakistan, violations in Pakistan occupied Kashmir are some of the issues that India would raise at the forum.

    India is confident of beating down the Pakistan narrative as many nations would come to its support. Some of the nations include Japan, Australia, Nepal, Egypt among others.

    India hopes to get maximum support during the procedural vote on the Pakistan sponsored debate on Kashmir. India would also look to ensure that there are minimum abstentions of nations that support India. In all India has so far engaged with 47 nations on this issue.

    Last month, Pakistan said that it had sent another letter to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights on the situation in Jammu and Kashmir. The letter highlighted in detail the context and consequences of India scrapping the special status to Jammu and Kashmir on August 5, it said.

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    India has categorically told the international community that its move to remove the special status to Jammu and Kashmir was an internal matter and has also advised Pakistan to accept the reality.

    Earlier on August 4, Qureshi had written to UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet and also held a telephonic conversation with her on August 8 on the Kashmir issue, the Foreign Office said.

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