Wednesday, 13 September 2017

Polo: the “Game of Kings and the King of Games”

An APP feature By Sultan Shoaib  

Polo- “the game of kings and the king of games” is very popular in Gilgit Baltistan (GB) and Chitral for centuries and it brings jubilation and fanfare to the people of the region once in a year at Shandur, Babuser Top and twice in Gilgit, Skirdu, Ghezer and Diamer.

The word “Polo” meaning a “wooden ball”, comes from the Balti language. The game of Polo which is played in GB in its most ancient form; some call it the purest form, by the mountainous people of GB and Chitral.

Polo is the most favorite game in Gilgit-Baltistan region of Pakistan. Gilgit, Skardu, Hunza, Diamer, Ghezer, Shigar, Laspor, Mastoj, and all other valleys around must have at least one polo ground, where local people can be seen playing polo.

“Freestyle polo was only played in the GB and Chital in the world, providing an opportunity of joy and entertainment to the locals as well as the foreign tourists,” President Polo Association Gilgit Ashraf Gul while talking to APP said. He said it was the “game of kings and the king of games” and was very popular in GB and Chitral for centuries and it brings jubilation and fanfare to the people once in year at Shandur, Babuser Top and twice in Gilgit, Skirdu, Ghezer and Diamer. Ashraf Gul said that “Polo is our traditional game and our recognition in the world and we are fully committed to keep it intact in future.”

During the polo tournaments thousands of people come to Gilgit from other districts and Chitral to witness the freestyle polo matches. Youngsters, elders and even children from across the region come here to attend the festival. Because the event provides a lot of enjoyment to locals as they eagerly await the occasion throughout the year, particularly after the long harsh winter.

Polo is a team sport played on horseback. The objective is to score goals against an opposing team. Players score by driving a small white wooden ball into the opposing team’s goal using a long-handled mallet.
Central Asian originated the sport of polo back in the 6th century, which was a training and war-like game played by tribesman, with hundred men on each side. With the passage of time, Polo became the national game of Persia, and gradually spread to other parts of the world.
The British Political Agent, Major Cobb, who was fond of polo, introduced and played the game for the first time in Gilgit Baltistan and Chitral. In 1982 Shandur was connected with Chitral GB via jeepable road, and importance and popularity of free style polo increased at national and international level because of Shandur polo festival. This festival was regularly included into national calendar in the year 1990s, and three days festival was formally scheduled on July every year.

“In 1982 Shandur was connected with Chitral GB via jeep able road, and importance and popularity of free style polo increased at national and international levels because of Shandur polo festival”. This festival was regularly included into national calendar in the year 1990s, and three days festival was formally scheduled on July every year, a legendary Polo player of Gilgit Baltistan Bulbul Jan told APP while highlighting import of the sport.
Bulbul further stated that “People of GB and Chitral are a historical and cultural legacy of keeping the mountainous free-styled polo in its purest form on the roof of the world”.
People of GB and Chitral are a historical and cultural legacy of keeping the mountainous free-styled polo in its purest form on the roof of the world.

For the purpose of revenue generating, the game needs further international publicity, and showcasing the soft image of Pakistan, For the promotion of Polo game GB Tourism and Sports Department has been organizing the Polo tournaments every year and is restoring all the polo stadiums in the region. The GB government has already increased the funds for the polo tournaments in all districts.

“We hope that the two governments will work together for the successful organization of this event to keep intact the game of Kings and will play a positive role for the promotion of freestyle polo”, Director sport Gilgit Hussai Ali told APP while emphasizing cooperation between GB and KP governments.

Thursday, 25 May 2017

Five Pakistani peacekeepers honoured with UN medals posthumously

UNITED NATIONS, May 25 (APP): The United Nations has honoured at a
solemn ceremony 117 military, police and civilian personnel from 43 countries, including five Pakistanis, who lost their lives while serving in peacekeeping operations during 2016.
Wednesday’s ceremony marked the annual International Day of Peacekeepers during which the Dag Hammarskjold Medal was awarded posthumously to the peacekeepers who have given their lives for the cause of peace, during the preceding year.
“Every day, peacekeepers help bring peace and stability to war-torn
societies around the world,” UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres told a large and distinguished gathering in remarks on the occasion.
The Acting Pakistan Permanent Representative to the United Nations,
Nabeel Munir, accepted the awards on behalf of the families of fallen peacekeepers.
The five Pakistanis peacekeepers are: Havildar Abdul Majeed Khan and
Havildar Zishan Ahmed, who served with the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO ): Lt-Colonel Muhammad Ashraf, who served with the United Nations Operation in Ivory Coast (UNOCI); Naik Qaiser Abbas, who was deployed with the United Nations Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA); and Ms. Shabnam Khan who served in a civilian capacity with the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA).
Pakistan is one of the largest contributors of military and police
personnel to UN peacekeeping. It currently deploys more than 7,100 uniformed personnel to the UN peace operations in the Central African Republic, Ivoy Coast, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Haiti, Liberia, South Sudan, Sudan and the Western Sahara.
The UN chief, who led a moment of silence to remember the fallen
peacekeepers, expressed his “deepest condolences and appreciation” to the family members and friends of those who died, as well as his “deepest sorrow and greatest appreciation” to the countries that contributed the troops and police officers.
The UN chief warned that peacekeepers continue to come under attack from armed groups, spoilers and increasingly by terrorists, including incidents in Mali, the Central African Republic, and South Sudan.
“But the closure of our operations in Ivory Coast and Liberia over the
coming months reminds us that the contributions, investments and sacrifices of our United Nations peacekeepers have contributed to the transformation of these countries from battlefields to peaceful states,” he stressed.
“And the greatest tribute we can pay to those who have died is to
rededicate ourselves to continuing their work to build and maintain peace,” he said.
“UN peacekeeping is one of the international community’s most
effective investments to support peace, security and prosperity. ” While peacekeeping carries a tragically high price in lives lost, it brings enormous returns in lives saved,” Guterres said.
“And if there is something that makes the United Nations known all
over the world are Blue Helmets,” he said. “Our debt in relation to peacekeepers is something that we will never be able to repay.”
UN peacekeeping operations use the Day to strengthen bonds with the
local populations that they have been deployed to serve. For example by holding sporting events, school and orphanage visits, art and essay competitions, photo exhibits, neighbourhood clean ups, tree plantings, concerts, and conferences and workshops on peace issues.

Saturday, 4 February 2017

KASHMIR - A Festering Wound of South Asia

SINCE 1989

Total Killings : 94,504
Custodial Killings : 7,062
Arrests:  136,434
Children Orphaned: 107,586
Houses/Shops Destroyed: 106,261
Women Widowed: 22,824
Rapes: 10,433

Jewel of Asia, linked to South and Central Asia, bounded by India, China and Pakistan.85,806 square kilometers, larger than 87 sovereign countries on the planet.Approximately 13 million, including 1.5 million refugees in Pakistan and 0.4 million expatriates. Muslims - 67.00%, Hindus - 29.63%, Buddhists - 01.12% and others - 02.25%.British formed partition plan of 1947 envisaged
accession of Kashmir with either India or Pakistan as desired by majority of population.
However, the Hindu ruler unilaterally decided to join India, which was massively rejected and
protested. Meanwhile, Indian Army invaded and occupied it by force.
Indian Prime Minister Jawaher Lal Nehru took the matter to UN in 1949, which passed a resolution on 5 January, 1949 (Document No. S/1196, para 15)
saying, “ “The question of the accession of the State of Jammu and Kashmir to India or Pakistan would be decided through the democratic method of a free and impartial plebiscite.” UN passed another resolution on 23 December, 1952 (Document No. S/2883)
calling for, “Reduction of forces in Kashmir i.e. 3000 to 6000 on Pakistan's side and 12000 to 18000 on Indian side of LOC.” However, India has been continuously refusing from implementation of UN
resolutions and resorting to state terrorism besidesUN has passed five resolutions till now. India accorded a special status to occupied Kashmir and have been holding elections, which are massively boycotted by oppressed and aggrieved Kashmiris. Nevertheless, there is no substitute to UN
sanctioned plebiscite for determining its status. India has been using despicable and lethal ways to
shun the voice of Kashmiri people. Despite Indian criminal and inhuman atrocities. It failed to suppress the inalienable freedom movement. Indian frustration is increasing day by day and it is targeting the innocent Kashmiris. In recent weeks, Indian forces have martyred 112 Kashmiri youth, injured 10468 persons, arrested 1382 and more than 100 people have lost their eye sight due to usage of lethal pellet gun.

A free and fair plebiscite under international auspices
as per UN Resolutions to determine the will of the
people. Alternatively negotiated settlement of the
dispute as agreed by all three parties, i.e.
India,Pakistan and Kashmiris. International
community should impress upon India to give up its
intransigence and show positive approach towards
resolving the kashmir dispute.


We are thankful to All Parties Hurriyat Conference with regard to this writeup.

Cyber Wing, Ministry of Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage, Govt. of Pakistan.

Kashmir and India's Commitments

“If the people of Kashmir are in favour of opting for Pakistan, 
no power on earth can stop
them from doing so. They should be left free to
decide for themselves.” MAHATAMA
GANDHI Speech at Prayer Meeting, 26
October 1947 Complete Works of Mahatama
Gandhi, P. 413 and fn.1.

“.......But so far as the Government of India is
concerned, every assurance and international
commitment in regard to Kashmir stands.”          
 JAWAHARLAL NEHRU Statement in the
Indian Council of States, 18 May 1954.

1. “Our view which we have repeatedly made public is that the
question of accession in any disputed territory or State must be
decided in accordance with wishes of people and we adhere to this
view.” JAWAHARLAL NEHRU in telegram No. 402 dated 27
October 1947 to Prime Minister of Pakistan repeating telegram
addressed to Prime Minister of United Kingdom

2. “In regard to accession also, it has been made clear that this is
subject to reference to people of State and their decision.”
JAWAHARLAL NEHRU in telegram No. 413 dated 28 October
1947 addressed to Prime Minister of Pakistan

3. “Leave the decision regarding the future of this State to the
people of the State. It is not merely a promise to your Government but
also to the people of Kashmir and to the world.” JAWAHARLAL
NEHRU In telegram No. 25 dated 31 October 1947 addressed to
Prime Minister of Pakistan

4. “And let me make it clear that it has been our policy all along
that where there is a dispute about the accession of a state to either
Dominion, the accession must be made by the people of that state”.
JAWAHARLAL NEHRU Broadcast to the Nation: ‘All India
Radio’: 2 November 1947

5. “We have always right from the beginning accepted the idea of
the Kashmiri people deciding their fate by referendum or
plebiscite………” JAWAHARLAL NEHRU Statement at Press
Conference in London, 16 January 1951, The Statesman, 18
January 1951

6. “We had given our pledge to the people of Kashmir, and
subsequently to the United Nations; we stood by it and we stand by it
today. Let the people of Kashmir decide.” JAWAHARLAL
NEHRU Statement in the Indian Parliament, 12 February 1951

7. “We have taken the issue to the United Nations and given our
word of honour for a peaceful solution. As a great nation, we cannot
go back on it. We have left the question for final solution to the people
of Kashmir and we are determined to abide by their decision.”
JAWAHARLAL NEHRU Amrita Bazar Patrika, Calcutta, 2
January 1952

8. “If, after a proper plebiscite, the people of Kashmir said, 'We
do not want to be with India', we are committed to accept that. We will
accept it though it might pain us. We will not send any army against
them. We will accept that, however, hurt we might feel about it, we
will change the Constitution, if necessary.” JAWAHARLAL
NEHRU Statement in the Indian Parliament, 26 June 1952

9. “The most feasible method of ascertaining the wishes of the
people is by fair and impartial plebiscite.” JAWAHARLAL
NEHRU Joint press communiqué of the Prime Ministers of India
and Pakistan issued in Delhi after their meeting on 20 August 1953


Cyber Wing, Ministry of Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage, Govt. of Pakistan

Friday, 3 February 2017

Perilous Pellets- State Terrorism taking a new height

On July 8, Burhan Muzaffarabad Wani, a 22-year old Kashmiri, was killed in custody by Indian soldiers in a small village Kokernag in Indian Occupied Kashmir.
On the morning of July 9, Burhan‟s body was brought to a vast open ground in Tral, his hometown, and people started attending his funeral. About three hundred thousand people attended the funeral throughout the day.
On the same day, protests across the Kashmir erupted against his custodial killing but these peaceful protests were responded by Indian troops with excessive use of force, indiscriminate firing, including indiscriminate pellet guns firing, torture, summary executions, arrest and detention.
Only in two days (9-10th July 2016), 30 Kashmiris were killed and thousands were injured by indiscriminate bullets - direct firing including pellet firing on protestors head, heart and chests.
In Occupied Kashmir Indian forces are trampling underfoot the fundamental freedoms of the Kashmiri people with complete impunity. Peaceful protests continue throughout Kashmir and Indian forces responded these protests with brutal excessive use of force. The extrajudicial killings is a blatant violation of the right to life, right to freedom of expression and opinion, right to peaceful protest, right to peaceful assembly and other rights.


The use of lethal force by Indian forces on protestors, more than 76 civilians have lost their lives, whereas 6800 have been injured, 700 are in critical condition. As a result of the use of pellet guns, more than 250 people are now visually impaired. These concerns have been widely shared by the international community and human rights activists including Indian based groups. Indian daily newspaper „The Hindu‟ notes editorially that Indian security forces have been firing pellets from 12-bore guns (Repeater Guns). Police around the world have been trained to aim for below the knee. The idea is that the pain caused by the pellets, usually made of rubber, acts as a deterrent without maiming or causing serious life-inhibiting injuries. Theoretically, it sounds viable. The reality that‟s obtained in Kashmir from July 9th, 2016 is totally different. Indian forces have deliberately fired bullets and pellets above the knee. Patients in hospitals provide evidence to the effect that the firing had been aimed at head or heart of the protestors.
A division bench of the Jammu and Kashmir High Court at Srinagar asked the Government, “why people had suffered injuries above the knees and their eyes were damaged. Court further asked the government to review the use of pellet guns which has proven to be lethal. “Can‟t you explore other methods using water, using teargas shell or whatever you have instead of this (pellets)
because now by experience it has proven to be lethal,” the court told the government. “These are your own people. They have anger. They are protesting. It doesn‟t mean they should be rendered disable.” The High Court further said, “Pellet gun is being used indiscriminately. Maximum people have suffered injuries in eyes and other vital parts of the body.” Ghulam Muhammad Sofi, an ambulance driver, who was bringing patients from Ganderbal to a Srinagar hospital late on Thursday 18.08.2016 evening, had a miraculous escape when Central Reserve Police Force men fired pellets at him in Safakadal area here, causing serious injuries to him. A senior doctor at the B&J hospital Srinagar, who treated 32-year old Sofi, said more than 200 pellets had pierced his right arm and shoulder. “The severity of the injury shows that the pellets have been fired from a very close range and he (Sofi) had lost lot of blood,” said the doctor.

As per the official report prepared by Directorate of Health (Kashmir), at least 25 drivers working with the Department have been thrashed by forces during the past 42 days. The Directorate has suffered damage to 150 ambulances in attacks, during this period.
Ambulance drivers have been attacked and subjected to pellet firing by police and paramilitary personnel on the way while carrying the injured. Scores of ambulances from different districts arrived with window panes and glass shields broken. Aamir Latoo of Bijbehera, a student who suffered a bullet injury and died Monday night, was brought in a damaged ambulance. Hospital sources said, “Had his ambulance not been attacked and not delayed, he might have survived.
Hospitals in the Indian held Kashmir have been overwhelmed with people seeking treatment for, eye pellet injuries, and the doctors of the hospitals in Kashmir have made appeals to send a team of specialists to Kashmir.
Professor Sabia Rashid of the Ophthalmology Department of SMHS Hospital Srinagar conducting the vitrectotomies of the pellet injury cases said, “all the patients who have injuries to their eyes belong to age group of eight to 30 years and more than 50 percent of all pellet victims were teenagers in the age group of eight to 15 years.
According to Hindustan Times (http://www. on 19 August 2016, An ambulance driver Gh. Mohd Sofi was shot at in Srinagar‟s Safa Kadal locality on Thursday night, who was on his way to the SMHS hospital from Kangan, managed to drive the ambulance despite a bone fracture, said a doctor. He was allegedly hit by pellets fired by security forces while ferrying a patient to the hospital.
After shooting unarmed people and mourners during street protests, the Government forces did not spare the wounded and the sick in hospitals. The forces started targeting the doctors and attendants of the patients inside the hospitals. The government forces fired teargas inside SMHS emergency and harassed the Medical staff.
Dr Aadil Ashraf, of SHMS Hospital Srinagar said four patients suffering from chronic lung disease were being managed in the emergency unit; the shelling of tear gas shells caused severe suffocation of those patients. (
A 55-year-old lady Jameela wife of Abdur Rashid Khan of Nundresh Colony-B, Bemina., Srinagar, died of heart attack. When on Thursday evening Indian paramilitary force CRPF men stones at her house and trained guns at her.
According to her husband Abdur Rashid Khan, his wife noticed that CRPF men were throwing stones at their house. She went upstairs and opened the window. The CRPF men trained guns at her. Due to fear, she collapsed instantly and fainted. We took her to nearby SKIMS Medical College Hospital where doctors declared her brought-dead.


Pellet Cartridges are loaded with iron balls numbering about 500 and once fired they disperse in huge numbers. These are not plastic quoted. They don‟t follow a definite path. Pellets penetrate the skin‟s soft tissues, and eye being the delicate structure - is the most vulnerable to damage. Once the pellet goes inside an eye, it shatters tissues and causes multiple damages to all parts of the eye.



Doctors at SMHS hospital told that more than 50 percent of the victims hit with pellets in eyes during the on-going protests in Kashmir are teenagers.
The first Kashmiri to lose his eyesight to pellets was Amir Kabir Beigh of Towheed Gunj, old town Baramulla.
He lost both his eyes six years ago in the September 2010 protests. The young man now says God will give him justice in the form of Kashmir‟s Azadi. “It was the 18th of September 2010, evening time, when government forces fired several pellets into my eyes, near the Azad Gunj bridge near the old Baramulla hospital.

Abid Mehraj Shah is on ventilator in the SHMS hospital‟s Intensive Care Unit (ICU), unconscious since he was admitted in hospital. His pulse and blood pressure are being monitored on a screen through electrical wires attached to his body. He was protesting in Tahab area of Pulwama district. The police and CRPF burst teargas shells directly on protestors, one shell fell close to Abid and he began to run for safety. He had run hardly a few steps when he skidded on the road and fell. Then the police came near him, hit him first with gun butts and then with their legs. Hurling abuses at him, they picked him up, held him by his arms, and then another cop shot him with pellets. As per hospital records, pellets have entered his face, left eye, neck and chest.

Six members of a family were hit by pellets in Awra village of north Kashmir‟s Kupwara district by government forces on 17th August 2016, among them were two women and 1-year-old baby.
One of the members, Nazir Ahmad Dar, 32, a government employee, has been admitted to the Ward 18 of the Ophthalmology department of SMHS hospital. A doctor who attended to him said Nazir has multiple pellet injuries in the face, neck, head, chest, back, arms and tongue.
Reports said the security forces used live ammunition and also pellets fired from shot-guns to chase away the tens of thousands of protesters who took to the streets in the valley, (BBC News 14 July, 2016)
Street hawker Tariq Ahmad Gojri, 19, lost sight in his right eye due to a pellet injury. Mr Gojri says he sustained the injury last year, when he had gone to fetch milk from a neighbour pellet firiing but had fallen a prey.
Mr Beigh sustained the injuries during an incident in north Kashmir‟s Baramulla town in September 2010. He said he was returning home when he was hit by the pellets. He has lost vision in both eyes. (BBC News 26 June 2016)
Youth injured by Indian forces pellet firing in Kakapora area of Pulwama is being treated at SMHS hospital on 19 August 2016. More than 250 persons were injured, scores of them with deadly pellets, In Ganderbal district, 41 persons were injured by Indian Army in Arhama village. The injured include 17 females and “16 among them were referred to SK Institute of Medical Sciences for treatment”, witnesses said.
Witnesses said people in large numbers assembled and held strong protest demonstrations. The RR soldiers beat up people with iron rods and gun-butts, injuring 41 persons.
Daily Hindu covered a story: Eight-year-old Junaid Ahmad on 19th July 2016 became the latest victim of „targeted fire‟ when he was shot at from close range by a pellet gun, resulting in extensive injuries to his chest. He is the latest to figure in the grim statistics showing that 14 per cent of those injured by pellets since July 9 are below the age of 15 and face complicated surgeries.
Ahmad was standing in a lane outside his house at Nawabazaar‟s Qalamdanpora area where a police Rakshak vehicle stopped at the lane and chased people assembling in the area. Ahmad
did not flee from the spot. Instead, he stood there. He was shouted at by a police man from the vehicle and then fired at without any consideration for his age, said Ahmad‟s relative at the Shri Maharaja Hari Singh (SMHS) Hospital. Dozens of pellets hit Ahmad in the chest, with some penetrating through to his lungs. “There are multiple pellet injuries in the chest but he is showing signs of improvement,” said a doctor in the hospital.
The hospital that receives only critical patients from 10 districts and caters to the city patients, is overwhelmed with cases of pellet injuries since July 9, a day after Burhan Wani was killed.
It received 933 pellet cases till the first week of August. “We had 440 pellet patients who were hit in the eyes. Of these, 60 to 70 patients were under the age of 15,” consultant ophthalmologist at the SMHS Sajad Khanday told The Hindu. Around 40 surgeries are slated for next week.

Victim‟s dream to be become a doctor shattered, say relatives
( Ninth class student Insha Malik has lost vision in her left eye that was pierced by pellets fired by forces, and doctors say there are “zero chances” of the teenager regaining vision in her right eye, also badly damaged by the pellets.
14-year old Insha, one of more than 100 pellet victims, is lying unconscious in the Surgical ICU of general specialty

The pellets have ruptured her right eye and it has come out. The left eye is lacerated with zero chance of recovery,” said a doctor attending to her. Insha hails from Sedow village of south Kashmir‟s Shopian.
The doctor added: “She does not even have perception of light in the eye that she is left with.”
According to her relatives, Insha was in the first floor of her house when forces fired pellets inside their house late on Tuesday evening. “She screamed and fell unconscious and within no time her face was swollen,” recalled one of her relatives, adding: “There were no protests going on in the area.”

Insha was rushed to the hospital late in the night where doctors took her straight to the ICU.
She is being continuously monitored since. “We haven‟t admitted such a severe case in the hospital so far. The pellets have completely disfigured her face and resulted in multiple fractures and injuries in her face and skull,” said the doctor quoted above. “She is lucky that the pellets did not pierce her vessel on the neck or the airway.” Apart from the loss of vision, pellets have resulted in fracture to her frontal bone (forehead) and nasal bone, apart from fracture to her maxillary bone.
“We are ensuring that her condition remains stable. There is no treatment which can get her vision back in her eyes given the damage caused by the pellets. The pellets will remain inside her face and skull. Her fracture will heal up but the damage is done.”
Her mother sobs quietly by the side of her ICU bed as if not to wake her up. Her daughter wanted to become a doctor and was studying hard, she said, “She used to say she will have no time to play next year when she would be in Class 10th,” a relative of her said.
Doctors treating Insha said her condition was not stable and even the air-ambulance that was being offered for her could put her life at stake.

Three people were injured, one of them critically, in pellet firing by Indian forces at Batpora area of Khanabal in south Kashmir’s Anantnag district on 19 August 2016.



India is blinding young Kashmiri protesters — and no one will face justice. The steel pellets used by police and troops are officially a „non-lethal weapon‟, but those wounded will live in partial or total darkness.

In Kashmir, Indian security forces use pellet guns that often blind protesters.

( security-forces-use-pellet-guns-that-often-blind-protesters/)
Patients seek treatment in Indian-administered Kashmir after being hit by pellet guns. At
least 66 people have been killed in the almost daily anti-India protests and rolling curfews
prompted by the killing of Wani on July 8. The Central Reserve Police Force, an Indian paramilitary unit, told the Jammu and Kashmir High Court that it had used 1.3 million pellets in 32 days, adding that “it was difficult to follow the standard operating procedure given the nature of the protests”. “It is the first time I have seen so many pellet-injured people. Pellets were also used during the 2010 unrest, but this time they [government forces] are using them
on a large scale,” a doctor from Kashmir,

( guns-160821054617323.html)

( protesters 
UN rights chief appeals to India and Pakistan for „full and unhindered‟ access to Kashmir
Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights,

(http://www.un .org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=54698#.V7rFB1t97Mw)

Lt. Gen. D.S. Hooda, India’s senior military commander in an interview
have stated “Kashmir Is Slipping Away From India. As India clamps down on Kashmir with an iron grip, it risks permanently losing the hearts and minds of the people”. (

Norwegian Foreign Minister Borge Brende has termed the situation in
Kashmir as “very delicate situation in Kashmir and hasalso offered that his country is available for mitigating tension between Pakistan and India over Kashmir.

Pellet guns are inherently inaccurate and indiscriminate, and have no place in law enforcement... Amnesty International India calls on the Jammu and Kashmir government to immediately stop the use of pellet guns in policing protests. They cannot ensure well-targeted shots and risk causing serious injury, including to bystanders or other protesters not engaging in violence. These risks are almost impossible to control..
This weapon is “less-lethal” weapon which has “deadly consequences”. Authorities have termed the pellet gun as a “non-lethal” weapon. “The death of a third person in Jammu and Kashmir due to injuries caused by pellet guns is a reminder that the „less-lethal‟ weapon can have deadly consequences.” On Wednesday, 23-year-old Riyaz Ahmed Shah died in Srinagar of multiple pellet injuries. “The autopsy report said that Riyaz was shot at from a close range, and there were multiple pellet injuries to his vital organs. The state police have registered a murder case against unnamed security personnel
Amnesty International guns#sthash.gogwiZFE.2xGGiS8H.dpuf
Amnesty International charged with sedition in India In India, Amnesty International has been charged with sedition after holding an event which discussed alleged rights abuses by Indian forces in disputed Kashmir. Amnesty has criticised the colonial-era sedition charge and one journalist who has covered sedition cases says this one doesn’t have a strong chance of succeeding.
( 17/amnesty-international-charged-with-sedition-

Another Season of Unrest Brings Darkness for Ordinary Kashmiris” “As Kashmir deals with the worst outbreak of unrest in six years, hospital wards are filled with partially or fully blinded victims of pellet injuries, some under 10 years old”.

“Kashmir and the Inheritance of Loss”, “A pellet is a high-velocity projectile 2mm to 4mm around and with sharp edges. It doesn‟t simply penetrate an eye; it ricochets inside it, tearing the retina and the optic nerves, scooping out flesh and bone”.

http://www.nytimes .com/2016/07/25/opinion/kashmir-and-the-inheritance-of-loss.html?_r=0

( article9005202.ece)

NEW YORK TIMES; August 28, 2016

The street out is patrolled by police officers in camouflage, bracing the nightly spasm of violence, but it quite here inside the operating room. The surgeon‟s knife slides into an eyeball as if it were a soft fruit.
The patient‟s eyelids have been stretched back with a metal clamp, so his eyeball bulges out of glistening pink tissue. The surgeon sits with his back very straight, cutting with tiny movements of his fingers. Every now and then, a thread of blood appears in the patient‟s eye socket. The patient is 8 years old.
“Very bad,” murmurs the surgeon, Dr. S. Natarajan. But then, all 13 cases he will see today will be very bad.
New York times reporter Ellen Barry reports form an operation theater of a Srinagar hospital.
Since mid-July, when the current wave of protests against the Indian military occupation started, more than 570 patients have reported to Srinagar‟s main government hospital with eyes ruptured by lead pellets, sometimes known as birdshot, fired by security forces armed with pump-action shotguns to disperse crowds.                                                      

 Attacks on ambulances are a clear violation of international humanitarian laws.
 The duty of treating the wounded / sick and protection of medical facilities and personal has been at the core of international humanitarian laws.
 These attacks by State forces are against the Geneva Convention of 1949 and the two additional Protocols of 1977.
 These attacks are against the UN Security Council Resolution 2286 (2016) that strongly condemns attack on medical facilities.
 The excessive use of force and use of live ammunition on protestors by Indian armed forces is violation of UN Basic Principles on the use of Force and Firearms by the Law Enforcement Officials.
 Attacks and restrictions on peaceful assembly is violation of right to freedom of expression. (Article 19 of The Universal Declaration of Human Rights and free assembly Article 20 of Universal Declaration of Human Rights and International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights - Article 21.
 The state sanctioned impunity is against international human rights law.
 People of Kashmir have been arbitrary arrests and detained therefore violation of Article 9 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights that “no one shall be subjected to arbitrary arrest, detention or exile”. As well as International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, Article 9.
 The forces are involved in custodial killings / summary executions therefore violation of International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR — Article 6.1).
 The forces have used frequently and indiscriminately the pellet guns on protestors. The pellet cartridge contains 400-500 iron ball bearings and once fired, is inherently inaccurate and indiscriminate. The pellet firing has caused blindness to 300 persons. The use of pellet guns is not in line with international standards on the use of force.


 We are thankful to Directorate General of Electronic Media and Publications for their support with regard to this write up.

   Cyber Wing, Ministry of Information, Broadcasting and National Heritage, Govt. of Pakistan