Amnesty International’s latest human rights report comes down heavily on the Indian government’s clampdown on civil liberties in Kashmir

Print edition :

Security personnel during a search operation to flush out militants, on the outskirts of Srinagar on April 7. Photo: S. Irfan/PTI

India has attracted strong criticism in Amnesty International’s latest human rights report, with the Narendra Modi government’s coercive handling of Kashmir getting highlighted.

Amnesty International released the report, titled “The State of the World’s Human Rights 2020/2021” on April 7. It looks at the human rights situation in 149 countries.

The global human rights watchdog has taken exception to the Indian government’s clampdown on civil liberties in Kashmir besides its iron-fisted handling of the anti-CAA protesters. The report also focussed on the ongoing farmers’ protests and last year’s Delhi riots.

Amnesty International released the report, titled “The State of the World’s Human Rights 2020/2021” on April 7. It looks at human rights situation in 149 countries.

The report pointed out that the lockdown in response to the cornonavirus pandemic was “punitive” in nature in India.

The report came down heavily on the Modi government’s unilateral actions in Kashmir. It said that a year after the government revoked the special status of Jammu and Kashmir and split the State into two union territories, the “clampdown” on civil liberties and restrictions on communications services continued.

It said: “Political leaders such as Farooq Abdullah, Omar Abdullah and Mehbooba Mufti, who were administratively detained in 2019, were released in 2020. However, the union government continued to silence those who demanded accountability and imposed a harsh media blackout.”

It also focussed on the high-handed treatment meted out to journalists in Kashmir. According to the report, at least 18 journalists in Kashmir were physically attacked by the police or summoned to police stations.

“Dissent was further suppressed when a new media policy was introduced by the Jammu and Kashmir government to create a sustained narrative on the functioning of the government in media by checking anti-national activities,” the report said.

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