Pak raking up Kashmir for domestic propaganda: Ex-diplomats


New Delhi,  As India hit back at Pakistan at the UNHRC over the latters attempt to rake up Kashmir, former diplomats said that Islamabad was doing it for the sake of “domestic propaganda” and that most countries have acknowledged that revoking Kashmir’s special status is India’s internal matter.

Former Foreign Secretary Lalit Mansingh told IANS: “I think that India is facing this with confidence, because the ground situation in Kashmir is well within control. Most of the countries that India has approached have acknowledged that it is an internal matter for India, and there should be no outside interference.”

G. Parthasarathy, former envoy to Islamabad, told IANS: “The fact of the matter is that Pakistan has not done its preparation. Even to get it (country-specific UNHRC resolution) admitted, it needs 24 votes, not counting abstentions. So, I don’t know why they got into all this. They are doing this for domestic propaganda.”

According to Mansingh, besides support for India over its move on Kashmir, there is also “a strong sentiment against terrorism, which actually makes people understand what India is facing in Kashmir”.

He said that there was also this fear that “if the Taliban withdrew from Afghanistan, it would increase pressure on Kashmir, because in the past this has also happened that the terrorist groups would move from Afghanistan, and with Pakistan’s encouragement, get into Kashmir and other parts of India”.

Mansingh said despite the “usual noises” being made, the “situation seems to be favorable for India”.

“But we have seen that most countries are taking a rational view of the situation, and not rushing to support Pakistan, which it is asking for”.

He also said that “one of the arguments which actually helps us is that there are enormous violations of human rights going on within Pakistan and in Pakistan occupied Kashmir, and we plan to highlight that at Geneva. So Pakistan will be on the defensive.”

According to Parthasarathy, India can argue “point by point” on the Kashmir issue at the UNHRC, including explain that those political leaders who have been placed under detention would be released. They were taken under detention as “they were threatening agitations” at the time when Kashmir’s special status was being revoked.

The Indian government has also promised economic progress in Kashmir after revoking its special status. “Today their main crop is apple export crop. The government of India arranged it in a manner never done by the state government before, to see that the farmer gets his due. We’ve been tackling it in multiple ways,” he added.