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Thursday, August 18, 2022

Foreign envoys’ ‘guided tour’ to Kashmir: JKLF calls for shutdown, says Indian drama to hide rights abuse

Pro-independence group, the Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front, has appealed people to observe complete strike on Wednesday to protest the ‘guided tour’ of selected European and African parliamentarians to the valley.

In a statement, Khawaja Saifudin, the head of JKLF’s central convening committee, said: “by making these selected parliament members to visit Kashmir under the government protocol and not allowing them to meet common people, India actually wants to hoodwink the world by hiding the truth.”

He explained that UNHRC in its detailed reports published in 2018-19 “exposed India’s involvement in gross human rights violation in Jammu and Kashmir. India, in pursuit to counter these facts, has been managing these dramas”.

“While expressing their dismay through a peaceful strike over the visit of parliamentarians – managed by India, the people of Jammu and Kashmir shall give a clear message, especially to the visiting delegation, that the Himalayan region is not an integral part of India but a disputed territory whose final settlement is yet to be determined by the inhabitants only through the exercise of free, fair and unfettered right of self-determination,” the JKLF said.

Envoys from Europe and Africa will visit Jammu and Kashmir on Wednesday to assess the “development work and the security situation”, especially after the completion of the District Development Council elections, officials said on Tuesday.

They said during their two-day visit, the envoys would receive first-hand information on the development work undertaken by Indian administration after abrogation of the special status of the disputed region in August 2019.

Showcasing the efforts of India for ensuring democracy at grass-roots level, the newly-elected members of the DDC would be meeting besides holding a meeting with a few prominent citizens and administrative secretaries.

As resistance leaders remain under house detention since August 2019, ahead of the envoys’ visit, the Indian administration has also put pro-autonomy leaders under house arrest.

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