In Indian illegally occupied Jammu and Kashmir, India is using physical, mental and psychological torture at a large scale as a tool to prolong its illegal hold on Kashmir and to suppress the Kashmiris’ righteous and just demand for right to self-determination.
A report released by the Research Section of Kashmir Media Service on the International Day in Support of Victims of Torture, today, revealed that Indian troops during their unabated acts of state terrorism martyred 96,211 Kashmiris including 7,297 in custody and fake encounters since January 1989 till date.
India continues to use torture as a state policy by which people of Jammu and Kashmir continue to face horrific forms of torture at the hands of Indian forces in the internationally recognised disputed territory.
The report maintained that 683 women have been martyred by the troops and paramilitary forces since January 2001 till date. It pointed out that womenfolk constitutes the majority of the Kashmiris suffering from multiple psychic problems and mental torture.
The report said that Indian troops and police personnel arrested 168,009 Kashmiris, including women and children, during crackdowns and military operations since 1989 till date. “These arrested people were physically and mentally tortured by the Indian army, paramilitary and police personnel in different interrogation centers, police stations and jails. The use of torture by the troops has been widespread and indiscriminate in occupied Jammu and Kashmir,” it said.
It said 96,717 Kashmiris, including men, women and children, have been injured due to the firing of bullets, pellets, teargas shells and systematic use of torture by Indian troops and police personnel on the people in IIOJK since 2000. It said hundreds of persons, including 19-month-old Hiba Jan, 8-year-old Shahid Fayaz, 9-year-old Owais Ahmed, Asif Ahmed Sheikh,10, Aaqib Zahoor, 16, Ulfat Hameed, 17, Bilal Ahmed Butt. 17, Insha Mushtaq, 18, Tariq Ahmed Gojri,19, Faizan Ashraf Tantray, 19, Nadeem, 15, Sahil Hameed Butt, Ifra, Shabroza, Parvez Ahmed, 20, Danish Rajab, 24, Shakeela, 30, Zahid Nisar, 14, Yawar Yousuf, Qisar Ahmed and Arif Ahmed Wagay, 22, have lost their eyesight in one or both eyes due to pellet injuries.
The report said Indian Army, paramilitary, Special Operation Group, National Investigation Agency and State Investigation Agency have established scores of torture centres in occupied Kashmir where innocent Kashmiris are subjected to various kinds of brutal methods to extract information and confessional statements from them. “Cargo, Harinivas, Papa-1 and Papa-II, and Humhama and police stations are the most notorious interrogation centres where thousands of Kashmiris lost their lives due to severe torture during interrogation. Even top APHC leader, Muhammad Ashraf Sehrai and Altaf Ahmed Shah died in custody, while prominent liberation leader, Muhammad Maqbool Butt and Muhammad Afzal Guru, were hanged to death on the basis of a confessional statement and fake cases which was extracted on the basis of torture during custody,” it added.
The report said that over three thousands of Hurriyat leaders, activists, politicians, Ulemas, human rights defenders and journalists including APHC Chairman, Masarrat Aalam Butt, Shabbir Ahmed Shah, Muhammad Yasin Malik, Aasiya Andrabi, Nayeem Ahmed Khan, Fehmeeda Sofi, Naheeda Nasreen, Ayaz Muhammad Akbar, Peer Saifullah, Raja Merajuddin Kalwal, Shahid-ul-Islam, Farooq Ahmed Dar, Mushtaqul Islam, Maulvi Bashir Ahmed, Bilal Siddiqi, Zamrooda Habib, Yasmeen Raja, Dr Muhammad Qasim Fakhtoo, Muhammad Yousuf Mir, Muhammad Yusuf Falahi, Muhammad Rafiq Ganai, Zafar Akbar Butt, Hayat Ahmed Butt, Syed Shahid Yousuf, Syed Shakeel Yousuf, Ghulam Qadir Butt, Dr Muhammad Shafi Shariati, human rights defender, Khuram Parviaz, Muhammad Ahsan Untoo, journalist, Aasif Sultan, Fahad Shah and others remain lodged in different jails of IIOJK and India under black laws, Public Safety Act and Unlawful Activities (prevention) Act (UAPA) in fake cases registered against them to suppress the Kashmiris’ ongoing right to self-determination demand.
The report revealed that India is using torture as a tool of suppression against to create fear psychosis, mental & psychological torture at a large scale to prolong its illegal hold on Jammu and Kashmir.
It pointed out that womenfolk constitute the majority of the Kashmiris suffering from multiple psychic problems and mental torture. “Due to unending agony, Kashmiri widows, half widows are suffering from psychological and other problems. As per a study, women comprise more than 60% of psychiatric patients in IIOJK,” it added.
According to Zoya Mir, a clinical psychologist in Srinagar, physical illness takes priority for many people. Mental illness is not visible in the same way, so it is difficult to understand it. “Stigma is attached to mental illness. Someone visiting a psychiatrist is considered crazy, which is why not many people even speak about it,” Mir said.
The report pointed out that the life of the people of occupied Kashmir has become a living hell since August 05, 2019, when the Narendra Modi-led Hindutva BJP government repealed the special status of IIOJK by violating international laws and placed it under military siege. “Occupied Kashmir has been turned into the world’s largest prison and military state by India,” it said.
The report said, India is carrying out the genocide of Kashmiris for the past over seven decades and the killing spree witnessed a massive surge since August 05, 2019. Kashmiri youth are picked up from their homes, killed in fake encounters and in custody and buried at unknown locations, it said.
The report said that India should allow unconditional access to international human rights organizations to IIOJK to assess the prevailing human rights situation in the territory. New Delhi should also ratify the UN Convention against Torture and other cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment, it said.
The report maintained that despite facing India’s worst kind of torture and nefarious tactics, Kashmiris are determined to take their freedom movement to its logical conclusion. It said that the world community, particularly the UN must take cognizance of New Delhi’s brutal actions in IIOJK and come forward in a big way to save the Kashmiris from the Indian atrocities.
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