Articles Regarding Pakistan

Shabir Shah: Nelson Mandela of Kashmir gravely ill: "Religion News Service"

WASHINGTON — Justice For All, a nonprofit global human rights organization, launched the #FreeShabirShah campaign on November 8, 2021 to advocate for the release of Shabir Shah. The campaign encourages individuals and human rights groups to pressure the White House and their local Members of Congress to save Shah’s life. Shah is a Kashmiri leader who has been imprisoned for 34 years without any trial or conviction. According to his family, he faces critical health conditions while incarcerated in India’s Tihar Jail.

Shah was declared a Prisoner of Conscience by Amnesty International in 1992. He is one of the most popular political leaders in Indian-Administered-Kashmir. His long standing non-consecutive detention took place without a single conviction against him. He is considered the Nelson Mandela of Kashmir. However unlike Mandela he has never been convicted of a crime. Tihar Jail’s medical staff advised Shah to undergo two surgeries and a possible biopsy. Justice For All was informed that his family demanded his release on bail for independent medical treatment and surgeries. If Shah does not receive immediate care, the consequences may be fatal due to his ailing health. For his most recent arrest, Shah has already served four years of pretrial detention for a 14-year-old unfounded case.

During this period, the prosecution failed to collect nor provide any evidence against him. Given Shah’s previous arbitrary arrests, and over 30 years of imprisonment, it’s evident that his arrest is once again for political reasons only. “Considering Shabir Shah’s precarious health condition, and the fact that he has never been convicted of any crimes, we seek his unconditional release,” explained Imam Abdul Malik Mujahid, CEO and Founder of Justice For All. “Under international fair trial standards Shah is entitled to a bail grant during his prolonged pretrial detention,” said Tazeen Hasan, Free Shabir Shah Campaign Manager. Justice For All has contacted the State Department, the United Nations Office of Commissioner of Human Rights, and Amnesty International to address the issue of arbitrary detention of Kashmiri leadership. Background: Situated at the intersection of two nuclear powers, Kashmir is a disputed region between Pakistan, and India.

The people of this Muslim majority region have been struggling for their right to self-determination since 1948 in Indian Occupied Kashmir. In 1948, their right was accepted by the United Nations Security Council. Seventy-four years have passed, but a referendum has not been held. According to the reports by human rights organizations, the Indian State is violating the population’s fundamental human rights. Enforced disappearances, arbitrary detentions, torture in police custody, detentions and use of violence on peaceful protestors, convictions after a trial in the Kangaroo courts, and baseless accusations have been recorded by human rights organizations and the media. India is the signatory of the human rights Charter, the Geneva Conventions, the Genocide Convention, and the United Nations Covenant of Civil and Political Rights.

However, the State is not fulfilling its obligations towards Kashmir, an occupied territory according to international humanitarian law, i.e., Geneva Convention. Recently, Genocide Watch, a global organization that monitors early warning signs of genocide, has raised concerns that India is beginning to perpetrate genocide in Kashmir. According to human rights groups, India has detained thousands of Kashmiris, all justified by a special act called the Public Safety Act. These detentions violate the Indian Constitution and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), which India has signed.

The State is not fulfilling its obligations to ensure the right to freedom from arbitrary detention and the right to a fair trial. A U.S based NGO with Consultative Status at the United Nations (Department of Global Communications), Justice for All advocates for the global strengthening of human rights, with a focuses on situations of genocide and mass atrocity, and promotes grassroots empowerment.

UN criticizes arrest of rights activist in Indian Kashmir: "CNN"

Rights groups including the United Nations have criticized the arrest of a prominent activist in Indian-administered Kashmir on terror funding charges. Khurram Parvez was arrested late on Monday by India's federal National Investigation Agency (NIA), an Indian official briefed on the situation told Reuters. His residence and office were searched and a mobile phone, laptop and books seized, he added. A spokesperson for the NIA confirmed Parvez's arrest on Tuesday.

He is being held under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, that allows for detention of up to six months without trial. His lawyer, Parvez Imroz, could not immediately be reached for comment. Mary Lawlor, the UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights Defenders, called Parvez's arrest "disturbing."

"He's not a terrorist, he's a human rights defender," she said in a tweet. Parvez, one of Kashmir's best known activists, is head of Jammu Kashmir Coalition of Civil Society, a group of rights organizations working in the region. He was arrested and detained on similar charges in 2016, after being prevented from boarding a flight to attend a UN human rights forum in Geneva.

He was eventually released without being convicted of any crime. The Muslim-majority Kashmir region has been the source of decades of tensions between nuclear-armed neighbors India and Pakistan. Both countries claim the Himalayan territory in full but rule it in part, and have fought two wars against each other there. India has long faced allegations of rights abuses in its portion of the territory, charges New Delhi denies. It tightly controls access to Kashmir for foreign observers, including the UN.

Left-Wing Extremism in India: Lessons from Gadchiroli:"Institute of Peace and Conflict Studies"

Counter-insurgency literature puts the limit on the effective functionality of an insurgent group to about a decade. Globally, the optimum possibility of an insurgency achieving its desired result has been within the first decade of its origin. Though it may continue to exist and carry out the odd attack beyond this timeline, the chances of it ever achieving its proclaimed end objectives are remote. As the end of 2021 draws near, the 17-year old Communist Party of India-Maoist (CPI-Maoist) resembles a crumbling group that is way past its prime and effectiveness. However, it still has the potential to continue in an emaciated form, exploiting favourable conditions available in states like Chhattisgarh. On 13 November, the CPI-Maoist group received a severe jolt with the loss of 27 of its cadres in an encounter in Maharasthra’s Gadchiroli district. Among those killed were Milind Teltumbde, a Central Committee member, two other divisional committee members, and Sukhlal Parchaki, a local commander.

The group, in a press release, termed the incident as “most sorrowful” and called for a shutdown to pay homage to the slain cadres. Elsewhere, Prashant Bose alias Kishan da, the group’s elusive senior ideologue, was arrested in Jharkhand’s Saraikela Kharsawan district. Bose, who in his mid-80s, is more of an inspirational figure within the organisation rather than an operations man. The killing of a large number of armed cadres in Gadchiroli has been a direct setback to the group’s operations and plan for expansion. An Offensive-Defensive Approach Two trends can be gleaned from the country’s policy on left-wing extremism (LWE) in recent years. Firstly, notwithstanding the ills that affect security force operations against the CPI-Maoists, there is an emphasis on a proactive ‘offensive-defensive’ approach. Operations such as the one in Gadchiroli, in which the Maharashtra Police and the state’s C-60 anti-LWE commandos participated, are part of this strategy of meeting the threat at the ‘point of origin’ rather than ‘point of impact.’ Such a strategy provides two inherent advantages. One, it strips the group of the sense of security it enjoyed during phases of inactivity or lack of violence.

Two, it impacts the quality of and preparedness for violent actions. Secondly, the Union Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has been able to achieve a uniform force-centric strategy to deal with LWE. For a long time now, and especially during the years of the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government, disunity among states and the freedom available to them to pursue soft or hard counter-LWE approaches had allowed the CPI-Maoists both significant operating space and survival opportunities. That now is a thing of the past. An informal understanding appears to have been reached between the central government and each of the LWE-affected states with regard to the primacy of an offensive-defensive approach. A state like Chhattisgarh, for example, had promised a different approach under Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel, but it has conformed to the MHA’s preference. Capacity for Delivery Nothing succeeds like success.

The Gadchiroli encounter comes roughly seven months after the ambush that killed 22 security force personnel in Chhattisgarh’s Bijapur district. At one level, this can be interpreted as the capacity of the security forces to turn the tide against the CPI-Maoist, albeit in a different theatre of conflict. Security forces in Maharashtra have performed relatively well vis-à-vis the Maoists in the only district of the state affected by LWE. Although the neighbouring Gondia district is also officially described as LWE-affected, it does not see much extremist activity. In comparison, Chhattisgarh’s nine districts (Dantewada, Bastar, Kanker, Surguja, Rajnandgaon, Bijapur, Narayanpur, Sukma, and Kondagaon) are LWE-affected. The state security establishment’s performance vis-à-vis the extremists, in comparison with its counterparts in Maharashtra, is relatively poor. Not surprisingly, Chhattisgarh both accounts for a major share of LWE activity and is a state where the CPI-Maoists manage to carry out major strikes on the security forces, albeit intermittently.

Therefore, while the encounter in Gadchiroli constitutes a major setback for the CPI-Maoist, Chhattisgarh holds the key to its decimation. In other words, losses suffered in Maharashtra or any other state can be recovered by the group in Chhattisgarh. As long as the CPI-Maoist group manages to operate in Chhattisgarh, LWE will not be brought to an end. Way Forward Purely from a security point of view, if a district-focused approach has worked to the advantage of Maharashtra’s security forces, there is certainly a case for replication in Chhattisgarh.

The latter is much more complex and part of the decades-long history of the CPI-Maoist’s consolidation in the state, which was part of Madhya Pradesh earlier, and only adds to the group’s wherewithal. Continuing challenges of intelligence-gathering, centre-state coordination, and eliciting popular support could potentially be better addressed by a district-focused approach. It will help break down existing complexities and enhance security capabilities.

BJP MPs to introduce uniform civil code, population control bills in RS: "Business Standard"

In the Rajya Sabha on Friday, BJP MP Kirodi Lal Meena will introduce 'The Uniform Civil Code in India Bill, 2020', seeking constitution of the National Inspection and Investigation Committee for preparation of 'Uniform Civil Code' and its implementation throughout India. BJP MP Harnath Singh Yadav will introduce the Population Control Bill and NCP MP Fauzia Khan will be introducing the 'Universal Health Care Bill in the Upper House. Friday is dedicated for members to move the Private Bills.

YSR Congress Party MP Vijayasai Reddy V. will move three Bills -- The Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (Amendment) Bill, 2020 to further to amend the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act, 2009; The Constitution (Amendment) Bill, 2020 (insertion of new Article 21B); and The Indian Penal Code (Amendment) Bill, 2021. Another MP Y.S. Chowdhury will move The Constitution (Amendment) Bill, 2020 (insertion of new Articles 12A and 12B). T

He other work in the Upper House includes the presentation of reports of the Department-related to the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Health and Family Welfare. The Committee in its 130th report on action taken by the government on the recommendations/ observations contained in its 123rd Report on "Outbreak of Pandemic Covid-19 and its Management"; Report of the Committee on Empowerment of Women (2019-20) on action taken by the government on the recommendations contained in the 14th report (16th Lok Sabha) of the Committee (2018-19) on 'Yoga And Sports Facilities for Women' will also be presented.--IANS