MIRPUR ( AJK): September 12 (APP): Speakers at a webinar castigating India for using the judiciary as a tool to stifle dissenting voices in the Indian illegally occupied Jammu and Kashmir said that denying fair trial to Kashmiri prisoners raises a big question mark over the Indian judiciary’s impartiality as well as its credibility.
The event hosted on the sidelines of the 54th session of the UNHRC by the World Muslim Congress was co-sponsored by the Universal Human Rights Council late Monday, said a message here on Tuesday.
World Muslim Congress permanent representative to the United Nations Geneva presided and moderated the event.
The panelists include : Barrister Abdul Majeed Tramboo PR IHRAAM, Ms Tazeen Hassan Justice for all Canada, Ms. Marry Scully note Rights defender from USA Syed Faiz Naqashbandi APHC leader , Advocate Parvez Shah APHC leaders and Wasantha Yapa Bandara Member of Sri Lanka parliament speakers while referring to article 10 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, said, “As per the UDHR, every prisoner is entitled to an impartial and public hearing when his or her rights are at stake”.
They said that the right to fair trial internationally recognized human right- was also an indispensable pillar of justice and democracy.
Highlighting the woeful plight of the Kashmiri prisoners who have been languishing in different jails, they pointed out that fair trial, which happens to be the basic right of every detainee, was denied to Kashmiri political activists, human rights defenders, and civil society activists.
Referring to the illegal detention of political leaders, they said that the Indian government booked the top tier of the Hurriyat leadership and left them to rot in jails.
They said that the Kashmiri prisoners who had been arrested on trumped-up charges before and after 5th August 2019 were not given enough opportunity to defend themselves in a court of law.
The judges delivering hastily judgments, they said were behaving more like prosecuting or police officers. “Judges cannot act as advocates for one side or another”, they said, adding that in the case of the Kashmiri prisoners, the judges of the Indian Courts have failed to maintain the degree of neutrality required to deliver justice.
Referring to international law, the panelists said that the burden of proof rests solely with the prosecution but in many cases, Kashmiri detainees were left with no option but to prove their innocence.
The Kashmiri prisoners’ unfair treatment by the Indian judiciary, they said, spoke volumes about the declining justice system in India.
Citing the reopening of decades-old cases against the Kashmiri leaders, they said, “It is quite clear that the heavily politicized Indian Courts have become pliant toward the current government”.
The speakers said that it was high time that the global community should influence the Indian government to stop weaponizing the judiciary against the Kashmiris.