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Activists’ ‘silence’ on J&K civilian killings questioned

Publication: The Times of India
Date: October 7, 2021
URL:       https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/activists-silence-on-jk-civilian-killings-questioned /articleshow/86826587.cms

Security agencies have questioned the silence of human rights activists and groups on the killing of three innocent civilians in Jammu and Kashmir on Tuesday, with senior officers asking if police action against terrorists and overground workers alone counts as “human rights violations” for them.

Makhan Lal Bindroo, a known chemist belonging to the minority Kashmiri Pandit community, was killed on Tuesday by The Resistance Front (TRF). Around the same time, Mohd Shafi Lone, a Kashmiri from Naidkhai, and Virender Paswan, a labourer from Bhagalpur in Bihar and residing at Alamgiri Bazar, were also killed, with TRF later claiming responsibility for them.

J&K police and central agencies believe TRF is only a front for LeT, rebranded to project Pakistan-sponsored terror as an “indigenous” movement by local Kashmiris.

The absence of any public statement by either domestic NGOs and ‘experts’ or international watchdogs, condemning the two dozen civilian fatalities inflicted by terrorists in J&K till September this year and Tuesday’s killing of three civilians, is being seen in the context of UNHRC chief Michelle Bachelet recently criticising the frequent use of UAPA, particularly in J&K, temporary communication blackouts and the high number of detentions.

Questioning the “deathly silence”, a top officer of the central security establishment said: “Despite planned, cold-blooded killings of three civilians in a span of one hour, no global outburst has emerged decrying human rights violations in Kashmir. The very same, so-called Kashmir sympathisers, particularly in Britain, Europe, the US and the Gulf, unleash a torrent of social media posts following any action by the Indian security forces against Pakistan- based terror forces. After three killings, they all have maintained a deathly silence. Within India too, those who are constantly pained over the killing of terrorists in Kashmir have found no reason to speak up if locals and non-locals are killed by terrorists.”

A J&K police official said international outrage on Kashmir follows a pattern. “It is selective and subjective. Brutal killings by terrorists year after year are ignored. These human rights champions are blind to the terror ecosystem where religion is used as a tool to indoctrinate vulnerable youth.”
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