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India calls for probe into atrocities by Pakistan in PoK, Islamabad calls it propaganda, separatists demand free Kashmir

India calls for probe into atrocities by Pakistan in PoK, Islamabad calls it propaganda, separatists demand free Kashmir

While the government of India called it an eye-opener, Pakistan claimed that the video shown was doctored.

A day after CNN-IBN exposed Islamabad's atrocities on the residents of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, there has been strong reactions and rebuttals from India and Pakistan. While the government of India called it an eye-opener, Pakistan claimed that the video shown was doctored.

The visuals have, however, put Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in a spot ahead of his address at the United Nations.

On Tuesday, CNN-IBN showed never before seen video of atrocities on Kashmiri protesters in PoK, agitating against what they termed as Pakistani aggression and illegal occupation. Standing up for their rights, the spontaneous protests that drew lakhs of people have been perpetually crushed with the Army and the police brutally cracking down.

Reacting to the expose by CNN-IBN, the Indian government called it an “eye opener”.

Minister of State, PMO, Jitendra Singh said, “It is an eye-opener for the world. There has been a simmering discontent among people from PoK for a long time...There is a common opinion that people in PoK are being deliberately oppressed in comparison to other provinces of Pakistan, and even elections are farcical.

More often the PM of PoK is elected by powers in Islamabad. The deprivation of democracy and discrimination has had an effect which is a matter for everybody who has an interest in J&K.”

Within hours of the airing of the report, some other members of the government also voiced their opinion on the expose. Union Minister of State for Home Affairs Kiren Rijiju said it was time for Pakistan to allow international human rights agencies to conduct impartial inquiry about the act committed.

“We have this intelligence input on how Pakistan has been suppressing voice in PoK. Now CNN-IBN has shown and proved it. We demand Pakistan government should allow international human rights agencies to do impartial inquiry about the act committed by the country,” said Rijiju.

He further said, “The whole episode by CNN-IBN has exposed Pakistan. It will do no good for Pakistan to raise Kashmir in UNGA...Global community should realise how Pakistan maintains double standards.”

Union Minister and former Army chief General VK Singh claimed that Pakistan always treated residents of PoK badly. “Pakistan needs to be taken to task,” said the former Army chief.

Pakistan, however, remained unfazed, claiming that the video was part of India’s “propaganda against Pakistan”. According to Islamabad, the video is concocted and doctored, and that there’s absolute freedom of speech and movement in Pakistan.

Meanwhile, the separatists used the opportunity to claim that atrocities were taking place in both Indian as well as Pakistan side of Kashmir. Abbas Ansari of Hurriyat said, “Now that atrocities are taking place in both parts of Kashmir, both India and Pakistan should hold a dialogue and grant freedom to both sides.”

first published:September 30, 2015, 20:47 IST