MUZAFFARABAD: A group of children put on a moving performance of songs condemning human right abuses, particularly the use of bullets and pallets, in Indian held Kashmir and the silence from the international community on Friday.

“Humein zinda rehne do, humein hansta rehney do,” (let us live, let us laugh) sang the members of the Kashmir Children Assembly at Azadi Chowk, outside the press club.

The children were also held placards with slogans and pictures of injured and detained Kashmiris on the other side of the Line of Control (LoC).

“Bullets are killing us, pellets are blinding us. Why the world conscience is asleep,” one of the placards read while another asked UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon, “How many more do you want to see dead in Kashmir?”

The protest was organised by militant leader turned peace activist Tanvirul Islam.

Students of the Sawera Model School, which was also launched by Mr Islam two decades ago, dropped their lunch boxes on the premises of the press club as a gesture of solidarity with the children across the LoC.

A banner they held up read: “No lunch today in solidarity with our brethren across the Line of Control”.

Two children from divided Kashmiri families also spoke to the media on the occasion.

“For the last 62 days, the children of Indian held Kashmir have been virtually detained in their own homeland, which was once a paradise on earth,” said Fazeelat Fatima, an 8th grader at the Sawera Model School.

A student of the tenth grade, Mashayem Shoaib said the demonstration was held in solidarity with anyone who was suffering in Indian held Kashmir.

Mr Islam and renowned columnist Syed Arif Bahar also spoke on the occasion and urged the UN and the international community to intervene on behalf of Kashmiri children.

Published in Dawn September 10th, 2016

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