APHC files petition in HR body of IOK for disbanding of VDCs
Srinagar, August 14, 2013 (PPI-OT): In occupied Kashmir, the All Parties Hurriyet Conference has filed a petition in the Human Rights Commission of the territory seeking disbanding of the so-called Village Defence Committees (VDCs). The move came amidst growing demand for dissolution of the VDCs in the wake of their involvement in fanning violence in Kishtwar district which has claimed three lives so far. The petition has been filed by advocate Aijaz Ahmad Dar on behalf of head of APHC’s legal cell, Abdul Manan Bukhari.
In the petition, the petitioner has submitted that the members of VDCs, created in 90’s in Jammu region, were involved in massive human rights violations and creating communal and ethnic divide. “VDC members have been found resorting to terror tactics, often causing greater violation of human rights by targeting civilians.
Not only have they caused greater communal and ethnic divide, their very existence defies any international law. There is every possibility and apprehension that communal forces like VDCs may repeat the 1947-like massacre and situation if they are not disbanded forthwith,” the petition read.
The petitioner maintained that the VDC members had been given a license to kill innocent persons and were not held accountable for their actions.
Detailing the human rights abuses committed by the militia including the recent rape of a girl and murder of a student, the petitioner charged the VDCs of misusing their authority. “VDC members have become something like a law unto themselves. Many VDC members are village touts with little or no education and many of them are hooligans,” the petitioner stated.
He prayed that the Chief Secretary, Principal Secretary Home Department and Deputy Commissioner Kishtwar be directed to disband these Committees forthwith. “Besides, the respondents may be directed to furnish the explanation for their failure in controlling the communal riots,” the petition added.
On the other hand, the puppet administration has ruled out any possibility of disbanding of VDCs in the territory. “No, it is a policy decision. As of now there is no such plan (disbanding of VDCs). It is to be reviewed later,” Principal Secretary (Home), Suresh Kumar told reporters in Srinagar.
For more information, contact:
Kashmir Media Service
Phone: 92-51-4435548, 4435549