The Chairman of World Forum for Peace & Justice, Dr Ghulam Nabi Fai, has said that the global Kashmiri diaspora has massively protested the Indian government’s attempt at confiscating over 203,264 acres of land for the development of Indian settlements.
Dr Ghulam Nabi Fai in a statement issued in Washington said, the Government of India has amended scores of laws which were responsible to protect the land and other rights of the indigenous population of Jammu and Kashmir. He said, one such law was ‘Jammu & Kashmir Agrarian Reforms Act of 1976’ under which the transfer of ownership rights of land was given to tiller; and provided surplus land to the landless and poor persons. He said the Act was challenged before the Indian Supreme Court which had held its constitutional validity.
Dr Fai emphasized that the global Kashmiri diaspora’s explosive frustration is to this monumental revulsion against the ‘land-grab’ which is the grotesque violations of their basic human rights. More specifically, he said, the people of Jammu and Kashmir believe that this recent ‘land grab’ clearly, is attempting to change the demographics of Kashmir and ferociously follows the Indian army precedent of occupying hundreds of thousands of acres of land belonging to indigenous population of Kashmir.
Dr Fai warned that eviction and demolition would be war crimes according to the international law because it violates various internationally recognized human rights. He cited the ‘United Nations Special Rapporteur on the right to adequate housing’ which stated, “The UN Basic Principles and Guidelines on Development-based Evictions and Displacement (2007) further expanded the definition of forced evictions to mean: [A]cts and / or omissions involving the coerced or involuntary displacement of individuals, groups and communities from homes and / or lands and common property resources that were occupied or depended upon, thus eliminating or limiting the ability of an individual, group or community to reside or work in a particular dwelling, residence or location, without the provision of, and access to, appropriate forms of legal or other protection…The often violent practice of forced eviction involves the coerced and involuntary removal of persons, families and groups from their homes, lands and communities, whether or not deemed legal under prevailing systems of law, resulting in greater homelessness and inadequate housing and living conditions.”
Dr Fai further quoted ‘United Nations Human Rights Commission Resolutions 1993/77 and 2004/28 which affirmed that forced evictions violate human rights.’ The UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights defines forced eviction as the: [P]ermanent or temporary removal against the will of individuals, families or communities from their homes or land, which they occupy, without the provision of, and access to, appropriate forms of legal or other protection.
“The world powers, including global civil society must condemn the surprise raids carried out by India’s National Investigation Agency (NIA) in Jammu and Kashmir, and the demolition and destruction of property of human rights activists, civil society experts and political leadership. These raids have become the favored tools of Hindutva BJP government to silence the civilian population whose demand has been the ‘right to self-determination’ that was guaranteed to them under successive UN Security Council resolutions,” he added.
Dr Fai appealed to the global Kashmiri diaspora to apprise the United Nations Human Rights mechanism by writing them about the matter.
Disclaimer: Eviction and demolition in IIOJK are violations of basic human rights: Dr Fai - Views expressed by writers in this section are their own and do not necessarily reflect Latheefarook.com point-of-view