New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: India on Tuesday strongly rejected Pakistan’s malicious campaign on Jammu and Kashmir at the UN Human Rights Council and said it cannot any interference in its internal affairs.

First, it was Secretary (East) in the External Affairs Ministry Vijay Thakur Singh and then it was Vimarsh Aryan, first secretary, MEA, UNHRC, who led the second round.

In a hard-hitting rebuttal to Pakistan’s diabolic rhetoric on Jammu and Kashmir, India called Islamabad’s charges “concocted” and New Delhi’s move to revoke Article 370 was “legal and within Constitution”.

Secretary (East) in the External Affairs Ministry Vijay Thakur Singh, in a clear reference to Pakistan, said those who speak on the human rights of minorities in other countries are "trampling upon them at will in their own country. They cry victim when they actually are the perpetrators".

There was a need to call out those who are misusing the United Nations Human Rights Council for "malicious political agenda under the garb of human rights", she said, rejecting Pakistan's charges against India on the Kashmir issue at the 42nd session of the UNHRC.

Singh said the recent legislative measures taken by India in Jammu and Kashmir were within the framework of its Constitution.

"These decisions were taken by our Parliament after a full debate that was televised and enjoyed widespread support. We wish to reiterate that this sovereign decision, like other legislations passed by Parliament, is entirely internal to India. No country can accept interference in its internal affairs, certainly not India," she said.

In an apparent reference to the Pakistani delegation led by Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, Singh said, "One delegation has given a running commentary with offensive rhetoric of false allegations and concocted charges against my country."

"The world is aware that this fabricated narrative comes from the epicentre of global terrorism, where ring leaders were sheltered for years. This nation conducts cross-border terrorism as a form of 'alternate diplomacy'," she said.

Today, Singh said, terrorism poses a grave challenge to the commitment of the international community to protect the right to life and security of people globally.

"Those who abet, finance and support terrorism in any form on territory under their control are in fact the worst violators of human rights," she said.

The world, in particular India, has suffered greatly on account of the activities by "practitioners of state sponsored terrorism" and it is time to collectively take decisive and firm action against terror groups and their abettors who threaten the fundamental human right to life.

"We must speak out. Silence only emboldens terrorists. It also encourages their intimidatory tactics. India appeals to the international community to work together in the fight against terrorism and their sponsors," Singh said.

Earlier, Pakistan demanded an international investigation by the UN Human Rights Council into the situation in Kashmir and urged the world rights body not to remain "indifferent" after India revoked Jammu and Kashmir's special status.

On the issue of the National Register for Citizens in Assam, Singh said it was a "statutory, transparent, nondiscriminatory legal process mandated and monitored by the Supreme Court of India".

"Any decision that is taken during the process of its implementation will comply with the Indian law and will be in consistent with India's democratic traditions," she said.

“One delegation has given a running commentary with offensive rhetoric of false allegations and concocted charges against my country. World is aware that this fabricated narrative comes from epicentre of global terrorism, where ring leaders were sheltered for years,” she added.

Later, exercising its its right to respond to Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi's statements at the First Secretary in the Ministry of External Affairs Vimarsh Aryan said Article 370 was a temporary provision of the Indian Constitution.

The recent modification of Article 370 was "within our sovereign right and entirely an internal matter of India", the diplomat said.

"We are not surprised at Pakistan's hysterical statements with false narratives aimed to politicise and polarise this forum (UNHRC). Pakistan realises that our decision cuts away ground from under its feet by creating obstacles in its continuing sponsorship of cross-border terrorism," he said.

Amidst Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan's provocative anti-India statements, Aryan said, "Some Pakistani leaders have even gone as far as calling for jihad to encourage violence in Jammu and Kashmir and third countries to create a picture of genocide, which even they know is far from reality."

The Indian diplomat from Jammu and Kashmir said Pakistan has the people of Kashmir are united to preserve the core values of democracy and Islamabad has "no locus standi to talk on Kashmir".

He said at the UNHRC forum, Pakistan has pretended to speak as the voice of the global community on human rights.

"But the world cannot be fooled. Pakistan's gory record speaks for itself. This rhetoric will not distract international attention from Pakistan's persecution and elimination of religious and ethnic minorities – be it the Christians, Sikhs, Shias, Ahmadiyas and Hindus," Aryan said, adding that the persecution of minorities in Pakistan is well documented

India’s strong rebuttal came after Pakistan raked up the Kashmir issue at the UNHRC, talking about the restrictions imposed and detention of political leaders among other things.   

Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, while levelling allegations and making unsubstantiated claims about the situation prevailing in Jammu and Kashmir, said it had been converted into the "largest prison" with people being denied access to basic amenities.

He spoke about detention of political leaders of all hues in Kashmir and said the people have been "caged" there over the past six weeks.

The Government of India and the Jammu and Kashmir authorities have repeatedly asserted that the restrictions were imposed to save loss of human lives and that, much of the curbs have been lifted from most parts.

Pakistan has become desperate to internationalise the issue of Jammu and Kashmir ever since India ended special status granted to the state under Article 370 on August 5.

Pakistan’s campaign to corner India over the Narendra Modi government's move to scrap special status of Jammu and Kashmir last month has not met with much success.

Islamabad suffered a setback on August 16 at the United Nations Security Council when, during closed consultations, 14 members of the UNSC — barring China — are believed to have agreed that matters between India and Pakistan should be bilaterally settled as per the Shimla Agreement and Lahore Declaration.

Posted By: Abhinav Gupta