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Kashmiri people reject PoK Amendment Act by Pakistan

The Switzerland-based Jammu Kashmir International People’s Alliance (JKIPA) has strongly rejected the proposed 14th amendment bill, called Azad Jammu & Kashmir (AJK) Act 1974, by the Imran Khan government.

The proposed draft of 14th Amendment Bill says: “No person or political party in so-called Azad Jammu and Kashmir shall be permitted to propagate against, or take part in activities prejudicial or detrimental to, the ideology of the State accession to Pakistan."

As part of the ongoing protest against Pakistan at the international level, JKIPA, under the chairmanship of Sardar Shaukat Ali Kashmiri recently organised a conference, 'Strict Restrictions on Freedom of Expression Opinion & Association’ in Switzerland last week in which members of his group based in the UK, Belgium, Hong Kong, Switzerland, Canada and the USA participated.

The conference declared that Pakistan has no locus standi on the Indian state of Jammu & Kashmir, which was designated as an Indian union territory last year by the Government of India.

Condemning Pakistan for violating the human rights of people in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (PoK) and Gilgit Baltistan (G-B), the conference also focused on the disappearance of youth in these regions. The conference expressed its serious concern over extrajudicial killings across Pakistan and in its peripheries. The participants asked Pakistan to take immediate measures to end the practice of enforced disappearances and demanded the release of people who have been arrested.

The Pakistani activists urged the international community to use its influence and ask Pakistan to end the political witch-hunt of people living in PoK and G-B, which are Indian territories forcibly occupied by Pakistan. They demanded that all political prisoners including political and human right activists Baba Jan, Iftikhar Hussain and their colleagues be released immediately and unconditionally.

UKPNP was formed by progressive nationalists of Pakistan controlled Kashmir in 1985 by exiled political leader Sardar Shaukat Ali Kashmiri to change the political narrative of the disputed region as the prevailing view by Islamabad misrepresents the Kashmir context and sentiment.

Kashmiri, told <em>India Narrative</em>: "Under this Constitution, we have given the rights to the government of Pakistan on Defence, Foreign Affairs, Communications. But colonial-style laws by Pakistan have taken our basic and political rights and freedom of expression and freedom of association”. The rights which were given to the people in the Assembly in the 13th Amendments are now been taken back through the proposed 14th Amendment of the Interim Constitution Act 1974, Kashmiri said..