Meenakshi Ganguly, the South Asia director at Human Rights Watch (HRW), has highlighted the human rights violations taking place in occupied Kashmir .
He has asked Indian government must work with Pakistan to find a solution that puts the interests of Kashmiris first.
The rights activist said it is about time leaders in both India and Pakistan realised that Kashmiris are living in a conflict zone and suffering human rights violations.
“They must understand and acknowledge this and ensure that human rights of these people are not violated anymore. It needs to happen right now … this should be about Kashmiris who are suffering.”
Ganguly regretted the fact that human rights issues are often ignored in Pakistan-India peace and not given the importance it deserves. “Whenever we start talking about Kashmiris’ rights the topic turns to militancy which leads to demands from one side and demands from the other and the whataboutery of the two parties as they try and justify their actions because of the actions of the other, which does not help,” she said.
Commenting on the current situation in the occupied valley, she said the Indian government has rejected reports by Amnesty International and OHCHR (Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights) recently issued on atrocities being committed by the Indian security forces.
“Once again we find out that Kashmiris are the ones having to pay the price for the political battle that goes between India and Pakistan,” she added, stressing that the focus should be diverted to protect the human rights of the Kashmiris.