Thursday, 14 March 2013

Human Rights: Do Kashmiri’s Have it?


Human rights are ought to be honoured, lest we may end up with a mess.
Although different countries may have dissimilar laws, but what is common among them, are the human rights, that have been granted to the citizens, so, that they could exercise them and take their advantage, as specified. Human rights, as righty perceived by all, hold good for the entire humanity. Terms like favouritism, biasness or any other preferential treatment do not exist while honouring the human rights. Countries where such practices are adopted either remain underdeveloped or do not enjoy the favour of people, which in turn, make them displeased and disappointed, in place of, being patriotic and loyal. It is up to the administers of law; the way how they want it to be framed and implemented so, that everyone is benefited.  The main role in the success and development of any country depends on its government, which if right, can enfold the path of peace and prosperity and could set pathways for others to follow. As a matter of fact, the people of any country have the same expectations, as far as providing developmental opportunities, promoting secure environment and respecting human rights are concerned. The main responsibility lies on the shoulders of the government which need to ensure that its efforts develop faith and trust in the hearts of people instead of breeding alienation or hatred among them. Whether or not, it is on the right track, can be determined by the support and opinion, the people of the country, have for it. Democratic countries give privilege to both the constitutional as well as basic human rights and thus, stand by their democracy. But what about those countries which in-spite of being democratic, muzzle the voices of people, if they are raised against the inhuman practices adopted by the country’s security personnel, on account of making law and order? Where to go and get your grievances redressed if the supreme authority remains at bay, from listening to its citizen’s complaints? Who is at loss? Absolutely, the citizens of that country, who in-addition of being far from contentment and are overburdened by the heartless and merciless attitude of the Government.
Kashmir, that once was known to be the paradise on earth, has now turned to into a battlefield between the people and the security forces on account of atrocities, that people have to bear at the hands of security personnel. It truly portrays the image of such a state, where human rights, don’t matter to anyone and are considered good for nothing. India, which claims to be the largest democracy, and the preacher of human rights, is in itself, its biggest violator. By granting AFSPA to its security personnel, it has made a hell like situation for those who live in the valley, while eased the task for the security personnel, who can do anything, they believe, could make the situation better. To name a few, forced disappearances, torture, suppression of freedom of speech unprovoked firing, highhandedness, and unkindly attitude of security personnel towards people, are all being attributed to this draconian act which has created a wedge in the hearts of people that is very difficult to overcome. Not only in the valley of Kashmir do the security forces enjoy this draconian act, they have the same powers in north-eastern states of India like Assam and Manipur also. But what makes the people of Valley more vulnerable to the injustices done under the garb of this act, is the status of J&K, as a disputed territory, which marks a black spot on its people, who are subjected to inhuman and ridiculous treatment quite often and are looked at, with suspicion, wherever they go. As evident from the aftermath of hanging Mohammad Afzal Guru, the situation in the valley turned violent. To maintain calm and ensure normalcy, indefinite curfew was imposed all over the valley, regardless of caring for the people, as to how they may be able to sustain, without having any stock of food items, at their disposal. Being unfair to the family of Mohammad Afzal Guru by keeping them in dark about his execution was not enough. So, to add to their miseries, the govt of India, as per the recent directions, refused to hand over the mortal remains of Mohammad Afzal Guru to his family. Why was he executed to satisfy the collective conscience of the society while neglecting the lawful remedies that could have been sought in that matter?  What is the point to deny his family of the body, when the constitution in itself gives the right to have the body? Further, the indiscriminate use of pepper gas and pellet guns has wrecked havoc in the valley, where innocent people have to suffer, for no fault of theirs. It seems that the value of human life has reduced to scratch and there is no one who could do anything. Although national human rights commission has stressed to discontinue their use, but still they are in practice and have become the cause of death to several people. Why aren’t the human rights being valued and do Kashmiri’s have such rights or they have been debarred from the same on account of being from Kashmir, are some of the questions that often come in one’s mind. What is the fault of people who are born in Kashmir? Why such type of maltreatment is exercised on them?
Although Kashmir is not the only one of its kind, that is under continuous threat of infiltration, but what makes Kashmir unique, is the tussle between India and Pakistan over this heavenly part of earth. Continuous incidences of human rights violation cases have rendered a very bad image to the democratic India. Democracy does not mean to gag people and suppress them. But the real meaning of being democratic is the ability, to honour all kind of rights without any discrimination and win the hearts of people. Come what the people may belong to, but the universal demand of people is to get an environment where they could perceive themselves to be safe and in better hands. None wants to be discriminated as far as enjoying human rights are concerned. Moreover human rights are framed to ensure that the well being of people is taken into consideration and so, is the importance to honour them. Valuing and giving respect to human rights is the minimum that the govt. could do in order to ensure the safety of its citizens, which is under scanner in case of Kashmir. Thus, the need of the hour is to work for the upliftment of human rights, so, that both the govt. as well as the people will feel satisfied with each other.

The writer is a blogger of IK, besides a student of Management at LPU
Syed Maajid Rashid Andrabi

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