Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) Prime Minister Raja Farooq Haider on Thursday called for the government to raise India's 'state sponsored terrorism' in held Kashmir in the UN Security Council.
“Across the world, even the oppressors cannot go beyond a certain limit in use of force against the oppressed. Indian troops have crossed all limits and the way they are killing the Kashmiris, demolishing their properties and molesting their women is unprecedented in modern history,” Haider said at a press conference in Muzaffarabad.
“As prime minister of the liberated territory of Kashmir as well as a common Kashmiri, I call upon the Government of Pakistan to raise this issue in the UN Security Council in accordance with the UN Charter,” he added.
The AJK PM's statement comes in the wake of the killing of three civilians and injuries to 28 others in anti-India protests in India-held Kashmir.
The protests had followed a gun battle between separatists and government forces that killed at least one rebel.
Haider added that Indian Army Chief Gen Bipin Rawat had recently given a 'license to kill' to his troops by warning that those who creating difficulties for security security forces in the valley would face “tough action.”
“The statement was a clear indication of the designs of the Indian occupation machinery that has already unleashed a reign of terror in held Kashmir,” Haider said.
He said members of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation’s International Permanent Human Rights Commission (IPHRC) were shown a documentary prepared by a Qatar-based TV channel on the human rights situation in held Kashmir during their recent visit to Muzaffarabad.
“While watching the video, the members remarked many a time that they did not have any idea that the situation in occupied Kashmir was so dreadful,” Haider said.
The AJK government, he said, had presented its case before the IPHRC and asked its members to convince their governments concerned to decide their trade and other economic relations while keeping India's track record in occupied Kashmir in mind.
He also called upon international media to realise its 'responsibility' to expose atrocities committed by Indian occupation forces in held Kashmir so as to make it known to the world what India had been hiding behind an iron curtain.
Constitutional reforms in AJK
On the issue of constitutional reforms in AJK, Haider expressed gratitude to the federal government for realising its need, adding that “the prevailing Interim Constitution Act, 1974, had failed to meet the demands of present time.”
The existing constitution had also been impeding the progress of this territory in many ways, he said.
Earlier this month, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had constituted a high-powered committee led by Foreign Affairs Adviser Sartaj Aziz and comprising Federal Minister for Law Zahid Hamid, Federal Minister for Kashmir affairs Barjees Tahir and PM’s adviser on law Barrister Zafarullah, to suggest reforms for AJK’s Constitution in consultation with a committee from AJK comprising Prime Minister Haider and AJK Law Minister Raja Nisar Ahmed Khan.
Haider said the AJK government had prepared a draft for amendments, which had been discussed with the Federal Minister for Kashmir Affairs, who also happens to be the in-charge of the AJK Council, before putting it up before the main committee.
Haider said he had contacted almost all opposition parties so as to reach a consensus on this issue.
“I am quite sure that these affairs will be settled amicably,” he said.
Status of Gilgit-Baltistan
Haider said that everyone in AJK agrees that the people of Gilgit-Baltistan should have their due rights.
He clarified that the federal government had not formally spoken to the AJK government as yet on the proposed provincial status for GB.
“I am however sure the government of Pakistan will keep in view the sensitivities of Kashmir issue while granting rights to the people of GB.”
He said he would soon visit GB to put a rest to “misgivings, if there are any.”