Statement by H.E. Mr. Ajit Kumar, Ambassador & Permanent Representative of India to UN offices & other International Organizations
We have noted High Commissioner’s reference to denial of access to the Indian state of Jammu & Kashmir. We acknowledge the role sought to be played by the OHCHR in effective promotion and protection of human rights; however, more would be gained if primacy were accorded to cooperation over confrontation with the States concerned.
2. The whole State of Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India. Pakistan remains in illegal occupation of a part of our territory. The two cannot and should not be equated. The neutrality of the phrase “Indian Administered Kashmir” is, therefore, artificial. Furthermore, the State of Jammu and Kashmir has an elected democratic government that represents all sections of the people unlike the situation in Pakistan-Occupied Kashmir.
3. The robust and mature Indian democracy proved once again that it has sufficiently strong and adequate mechanisms to redress any internal difficulties even if they are incited from outside. Normalcy has returned as 99% of the students of Jammu & Kashmir have taken their high school examinations and schools have reopened.
4.The central problem in Jammu & Kashmir is cross-border terrorism, and hence, we are a little surprised that the High Commissioner was silent regarding Pakistan that uses terrorism as an instrument of state policy.
5. States are the primary bearers of responsibility when it comes to promotion of human rights; countries often have unique national circumstances, and it is important to invest trust in their efforts.