India on Wednesday slammed Pakistan for misusing international platforms for “baseless and malicious propaganda” against it and said Islamabad would do well to put its own house in order, before venturing to point a finger at New Delhi.
Using its Right of Reply under the High-Level Segment of the 46th Session of the Human Rights Council in response to a statement by Pakistan’s representative, India said it was not surprised that Islamabad’s representative misused the UN forum yet again.
“Pakistan’s continued misuse of various platforms to engage in baseless and malicious propaganda against India is not new,” Second Secretary of India’s Permanent Mission in Geneva, Seema Pujani, said.
She asserted that the entire Union Territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh are an “integral and inalienable part of India”.
“The steps taken by the Government to ensure good governance and development in these Union Territories are our internal matters,” Ms Pujani said.
As a country with one of the world’s worst human rights records, Pakistan would do well to put its own house in order, before venturing to point a finger at India, the diplomat said.
Highlighting the violence and institutionalised discrimination and persecution faced by Pakistan’s minorities, including Christians, Sikhs and Hindus, she said that there have been frequent attacks on the places of worship of minority communities.
“The condition of women belonging to minority communities, notably Hindus, Sikhs and Christians, remains deplorable. An estimated 1,000 women from minority communities are subjected to abduction followed by forced conversion and forced marriage in Pakistan every year, according to a recent report published by the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan,” she said.
India also raised the issue of political repression in Balochistan, and other regions and enforced disappearances, arbitrary detentions and torture in Pakistan.
“Several Baloch human rights defenders have even met tragic death under mysterious circumstances, while in exile. Pashtuns and Sindhis have continued to struggle against the systemic oppression and discrimination,” the diplomat said.
Noting that Pakistan has been the home and patron to the largest number of internationally proscribed terrorist entities and individuals in the world, Ms Pujani said the state-sponsored terrorism by Pakistan is a threat, not only to India but to other countries in the region and beyond.
The Indian diplomat also highlighted the recent acquittal of al-Qaeda terrorist and murderer of the American journalist Daniel Pearl, Omar Saeed Sheikh, by Pakistan’s Supreme Court and said it is “a clear example of the Pakistan establishment’s nexus with such entities.”
“We request the Council to call upon Pakistan to take credible and irreversible steps to end state-sponsored terrorism and dismantle terrorist infrastructure in the territories under its control,” she said.
India also slammed Turkey’s remarks on its internal affairs, terming them as “completely unacceptable”. India also rejected the Organisation of Islamic Conference’s statement, saying it was “factually incorrect.”