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Human rights report names names in Kashmir, invokes international law

The report analyzes 214 cases and for the first time names 500 specific perpetrators working for India of crimes including enforced disappearance, killings, rape, and torture.

Indian human rights activists Gautam Navlakha, left, and Kartik Murukutla display a report by two rights groups during a press conference in Srinagar, India, Thursday, Dec. 6, 2012.

Mukhtar Khan/AP

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Two prominent human rights groups in India-administered Kashmir Thursday accused New Delhi of institutionally blocking justice in thousands of cases of crimes like enforced disappearance, killings, rape, and torture allegedly committed by its forces in the disputed region during the past two decades.

A report "Alleged Perpetrators: Stories of impunity in Jammu and Kashmir" released by the groups analyzes 214 cases and for the first time names 500 specific perpetrators including 469 military, paramilitary, and police officials besides 31 government-backed militants and associates.

The report, which took two years to prepare by International People’s Tribunal for Human Rights and Justice in Indian-administered Kashmir, or IPTK, and the Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons, paints a grim climate of impunity under which Indian forces are operating in the territory controlled by India and also claimed by Pakistan.  

“Beyond naming the alleged perpetrators, the report explains that the Indian state has not failed but succeeded in its policy of maintaining control [over the disputed region] through absolute impunity accorded to perpetrators of crimes,” says Kartik Murukutla, an author of the report who has worked in a UN tribunal on Rwanda for five years.

Residents of the Kashmir Valley and resistance leaders opposed to Indian rule of the region have long accused the Indian government of using its institutions to meet the ends of control rather than address issues of justice and political rights. 


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