Speaking at the 34th Session of the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva, Switzerland, India on Thursday has asserted that Pakistan continues to be an illegal occupant of their territory, referring to Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.
“The whole state of Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India. Pakistan remains in illegal occupation of a part of our territory. The two cannot and should not be equated. The neutrality of the phrase 'Indian Administered Kashmir' is, therefore, artificial.
Furthermore, the state of Jammu and Kashmir has an elected democratic government that represents all sections of the people unlike the situation in Pakistan-Occupied Kashmir," a statement by Ajit Kumar, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of India to UN offices and other International Organisations, said.
The statement also said that states were the primary bearers of responsibility when it came to promotion of human rights, adding countries had unique national circumstances and it was important to invest trust in their efforts.
The statement also asserted that the robust and mature Indian democracy had proved once again that it had sufficiently strong and adequate mechanisms to redress any internal difficulties even if they were incited from outside.
"Normalcy has returned as 99 percent of the students of Jammu and Kashmir have taken their high school examinations and schools have re-opened," it said.
India also expressed surprise over the silence of United Nations Human Rights Commissioner in a debate regarding Pakistan "that uses terrorism as an instrument of state policy".
"The central problem in Jammu and Kashmir is cross-border terrorism and hence we are a little surprised that the High Commissioner was silent regarding Pakistan that uses terrorism as an instrument of state policy," the statement added.
The 34th session of the UNHRC began on February 27 with Pakistan's Law Minister Zahid Hamid's address.
Hamid called on the UNHRC to remain "seized" of the "grave systematic violation of human rights and fundamental freedoms in Jammu and Kashmir" while describing India as the "occupying power" which is "brutalising" the Kashmiri people "so that they can give up their just struggle for the inherent right to self-determination".
India's to reply was delivered by the Indian embassy's counsellor (political), Alok Ranjan Jha, who underlined it was "unfortunate that Pakistan's trust in the methods of terror were so deep that it did not hesitate from "using air power against its own people".
(With inputs from PTI)