People of valley suffer under continued siege » Kashmir Media Service

UN chief stresses on respect for human rights in IOK

Srinagar, September 19 (KMS): In occupied Kashmir, people continue to suffer immensely as the Kashmir valley remained under strict military lockdown for the 46th consecutive day, today.

The heavy deployment of Indian troops has created an atmosphere of fear, forcing the people to remain indoors. The continued blockade of the valley has aggravated the situation to an alarming proportion. The residents confined to their homes are facing difficulties in meeting their daily needs. The shortage of essential commodities like milk, baby food and life-saving medicines is adding to the miseries of the people and the valley represents a humanitarian crisis. Normal life remains crippled as all markets, business establishments, shops and educational institutions are shut while transport is off the road in the valley. The occupation authorities continue to snap the means of communications including internet and mobile phone services and keep TV channels closed in Kashmir valley and Muslim majority areas of Jammu.

Meanwhile, APHC leader and the Chairman of Jammu and Kashmir Employees Movement, Muhammad Shafi Lone, in a statement issued in Srinagar said that India was hell bent upon suppressing the Kashmiris’ freedom movement through military might but would never succeed in its nefarious designs. He condemned the continued illegal detention of thousands of Kashmiris including Hurriyat leaders and activists. He also appreciated Pakistan for highlighting the miseries of the people of occupied Kashmir at the international level.

As the military clampdown continues, the multi-crore apple trade has reached an all time low, hitting at the economic spine of the territory. Ripe apples are rotting in orchards due to continued lockdown. Farmers and fruit traders say that the clampdown is stopping them from either getting their produce to market or shipping it out to the rest of world.

Indian government has launched a crackdown on mosques as several prayer leaders have been arrested during the past few months. Donations made for the mosques are being monitored. Indian police personnel are documenting the details of the relatives of the clerics while their bank accounts are being scrutinized.

On the other hand, the UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres, has underscored the need for respecting human rights in occupied Kashmir which is under repressive lockdown for over six weeks now. Addressing a press conference at the UN headquarters in New York marking the start of General Assembly’s 74th session, he urged India and Pakistan to find resolution of the Kashmir dispute through dialogue. Guterres said that he would continue to advocate for peaceful settlement of the decades-old dispute.

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