The office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) is clearly biased against India, and its claims of crackdowns on human rights activists in Jammu and Kashmir are "baseless," the Indian Foreign Ministry said on Thursday
MOSCOW (Pakistan Point News / Sputnik - 02nd December, 2021) The office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) is clearly biased against India, and its claims of crackdowns on human rights activists in Jammu and Kashmir are "baseless," the Indian Foreign Ministry said on Thursday.
On Wednesday, OHCHR spokesman Rupert Colville condemned the arrest of Kashmiri human rights activist Khurram Parvez and criticized India's counter-terrorism legislation for being used "to stifle the work of human rights defenders, journalists and other critics in Jammu and Kashmir and other parts of India."
"The statement makes baseless and unfounded allegations against law enforcement authorities and security forces of India," Arindam Bagchi, the ministry's spokesman, said in a statement.
The spokesman accused the OHCHR of showing "a complete lack of understanding" of the security challenges India faces from cross-border terrorism, and noted that it is the government's duty to protect its sovereignty and its citizens. Parvez was arrested "entirely as per provisions of law" on national security as part of India's counter-terrorist efforts, Bagchi added.
He also accused the OHCHR of anti-Indian bias for "referring to proscribed terrorist organisations as 'armed groups'," urging the organization to "develop a better understanding of the negative impact of terrorism on human rights."
Parvez, coordinator in a Jammu and Kashmir rights group, was arrested on November 22 by India's anti-terror investigation agency and has since been in detention over "terror funding" and other charges.
India and Pakistan, considered the same territory under the colonial British Raj, have long been at odds and fought three wars over Kashmir. Occasional clashes on the contact line have been a regular occurrence. Bilateral relations between India and Pakistan hit a new low in 2019 after the Indian government stripped Jammu and Kashmir of its special status and broke it up into two union territories under direct rule of New Delhi.