Kashmir will never be a part of India: Pakistan responds to Indian statement on PM's UNGA speech

26 Sep 2020

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Zulqarnain Chheena representing Pakistan at the United Nations General Assembly. — Screengrab courtesy United Nations
Zulqarnain Chheena representing Pakistan at the United Nations General Assembly. — Screengrab courtesy United Nations

Pakistan — in a strongly worded rebuke to the Indian response following Prime Minister Imran Khan's speech at the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) — categorically stated that Jammu and Kashmir never was and never will be a part of India, adding that New Delhi has no claim over the region other than that of a "military occupier".

"In Jammu and Kashmir, India has no other claim than that of a military occupier. It is compelled to use naked force to impose its occupation on an unwilling and oppressed people. Ask the people of Jammu and Kashmir and they will tell you emphatically: Jammu and Kashmir is not a part of India. It never was and never will be," said Zulqarnain Chheena, representing Pakistan at the forum.

Earlier on Saturday, India had responded to the prime minister's UNGA address calling it "full of lies, misinformation and warmongering", according to Hindustan Times. The Indian delegate had also walked out while the premier's pre-recorded UNGA speech was aired.

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In a rebuttal to the Indian statement, the Pakistan representative said that the Indian reply was "another shameful attempt to deflect attention away from the real issues".

"India, however, will not be able to escape accountability for its crimes. In his statement, the prime minister shed a spotlight on Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's India which is defined by its oppressive and brutal occupation of the land and resources of Jammu and Kashmir.

The Pakistani representative said that the state of Jammu and Kashmir was an internationally recognised disputed territory as decreed by the United Nations Security Council (UNSC).

"The final disposition of the state will be made in accordance with the will of the people expressed through democratic methods of a free and impartial plebiscite under the auspices of the UN."

He said that the indigenous Kashmiri freedom struggle seeks to realise the implementation of the UNSC resolutions in exercise of their inalienable right to self-determination.

"The Kashmiris have a legitimate right to resist occupation by all means at their disposal. This just struggle cannot be denigrated or described as terrorism. It it the occupying state that is guilty of terrorism against the occupied people.

"Like all oppressors India continues to believe it can subdue the legitimate Kashmiri resistance through brute force. In its playbook, the alternative to suppression is even more suppression. But like all colonial oppressors of the past, India will fail in its strategy of occupation and oppression.

"Kashmir will be free one day. This is not only a lesson of history, it is also an imperative of justice," he said.

Chheena added that the people of Pakistan, the Islamic world and all freedom-loving people stood with the valiant people of occupied Kashmir.

Oppression of minorities

The Pakistani representative also commented on the oppression of minorities, particularly Muslims, in India.

"The Nazis are often credited with perfecting the art of concocting lies and peddling false propaganda. But listening to the Indian representative, even the Nazis would acknowledge that the mantle has shifted to their BJP-RSS acolytes.

"The egregious human rights violations of the Kashmiri people, the deliberate promotion of the supremacist Hindutva ideology, the expansionist Indian designs against Pakistan and all other neighbours of India and the avowed aim of New Delhi to act as a regional bully: These are all objective realities, not partisan facts.

"As India's dissent into a fascist state accelerates, the projections which PM Imran made last year of the imminent disaster being fueled by the BJP-RSS policies are now being confirmed by their brutal actions."

Taking the example of the riots in Delhi's Shaheen Bagh neighbourhood against the Indian government's controversial citizenship law, Chheena said: "Hindu zealots perpetrated a well organised and orchestrated pogrom of Muslims in order to teach the traitors a lesson.

"Countless Muslims were killed, their homes burned, their properties looted, their places of worship desecrated, all with the connivance and complicity of the Indian state.

"The charred streets of Delhi not only expose the Hindutva ideology in all its intolerant glory, they also manifested the trusted method the Hindu extremists have resorted to — from Gujrat in 2002 to Delhi in 2020 — to address the Muslim menace," he said.

"It is no secret that the architects of the Gujarat massacre were also the masterminds of the Delhi pogrom. Just like the victims of Gujarat, the victims of Delhi will no doubt search in vain for justice in this bastion of fascism."

He stated that the perpetrators of these crimes will continue to enjoy impunity and will be encouraged to "spill more Muslim blood" to further consolidate the hold on power.

"It is a tragedy that state institutions in India have also become willing agents of this ominous Hindutva agenda," Chheena said.

Indian state sponsored terrorism

The Pakistani representative also commented on Indian state sponsored terrorism, calling the country "the mothership of terrorism".

"India has used terrorism against each of its neighbours, against its own people and against the innocent people of Indian occupied Jammu and Kashmir.

"India is actively involved in orchestrating, financing and providing logistical support to terrorist organisations to target Pakistan from across borders. It has hired organised criminal groups located across our western border to conduct terrorist attacks in Pakistan especially to disrupt the development of the western and southern regions."

He added that Kulbhushan Jadhav, a former Indian Navy officer arrested in Pakistan on espionage charges, had confessed to organising and supporting these criminal groups to perpetrate terrorism in Pakistan.

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"Pakistan and our entire region faces Hindutva terrorism as well. The BJP-RSS extremists continue to espouse the fiction a 'Greater India' which represents their desire for a unified subcontinent, dominated by the Hindu religion where minorities either convert to Hinduism or become second-class citizens.

"The Indian government is also responsible for the worst form of state terrorism against the oppressed people of illegally occupied Jammu and Kashmir. Over 100,000 Kashmiris have lost their lives under the brutal occupation spanning over seven decades. [But] not one Indian soldier has been punished for crimes against humanity and these atrocities.

"Despite India's wishes the international community can clearly see through the Indian hoax of presenting itself as a victim of terrorism.

"We must confront and defeat terrorism in all its forms and manifestations. This goal can't be accomplished without confronting the terrorism of hate and ambition which currently emanates from fascist ideologies [...] in India.

"Instead of tilting at windmills, India would be better served to put its own house in order and to strive for regional peace based on equality and mutual respect, and a peaceful settlement of disputes," the diplomat concluded.