Terror needs to be eradicated in Kashmir to ensure freedom: Indian-American attorney tells US House

The first thing somebody wants before they want human rights, they want to live,the attorney from New York told the Subcommittee on Asia, the Pacific, and Nonproliferation.

Published: 23rd October 2019 01:44 PM  |   Last Updated: 23rd October 2019 01:44 PM   |  A+A-

Indian-American attorney Ravi Batra (Photo | Twitter)

By PTI

WASHINGTON: Terror needs to be eradicated, so rights and freedoms mean something, a top Indian-American attorney has said as several US lawmakers underscored the importance of human rights in Jammu and Kashmir after the revocation of its special status.

Ravi Batra's remarks came while responding to a Congressional subcommittee on human rights in South Asia.

"When you have people afraid to come out of their house because they don't want to be blown up because cross border terrorism exists as a daily event and homegrown terrorist being nurtured.

ALSO READ | Pakistan-sponsored terror in Kashmir ignored by human rights activists: Journalist Aarti Tikoo Singh

The first thing somebody wants before they want human rights, they want to live," the attorney from New York told the Subcommittee on Asia, the Pacific, and Nonproliferation of the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

"I owe India an apology, as when she suffered the Mumbai Terror attack on November 26, 2008, when Jews and Americans were singled out for death by Pakistan based Terrorists, I joined in arguing for 'restraint'. I was wrong. Terror needs to be eradicated, so our rights and freedoms mean something," Batra said.

Batra said like former US President Abraham Lincoln, Prime Minister Narendra Modi also took extraordinary steps like legal amendments to have legal authority and then installing a massive force to prevent fatalities in Kashmir from motivated fire-fights by cross-border or home-grown terrorists.

Batra, who was personally invited by Congressman Eliot Engel, Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee to testify on this important issue, referred to Modi's argument in abrogating Article 370 of the Constitution that gave special status to Jammu and Kashmir.

"He (Modi) said he did this to bring the promise of equal rights and freedoms to all Indians.

His actions on August 5, 2019 were judicious, as they were careful.

No war broke out.

Terrorists were immobilized, as communications and internet were cut off,” Batra said.

"India, it seems, learned from her Mumbai terror attack.

Indeed, landing at JFK airport, when standing in line for immigration inspection, there is no phone service or internet connection.

Safety matters," he said.

Batra also drew a parallel between Jammu and Kashmir and the US states of Louisiana and Alaska.

"A simple point worth making: Kashmir was attached to India by a legal decree duly signed by its then-Hindu ruler Maharaja Hari Singh, several months after the needlessly bloody Partition when tens of millions were killed," he said.

Stay up to date on all the latest World news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)

Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp