The Confederation of Lawyers of Asia and Pacific (COLAP) expresses its serious concern over ongoing increasing tension in Jammu and Kashmir because of state enforced lockdown by Indian central government. The COLAP in a statement to the press today said that the ongoing crisis in Jammu and Kashmir state has created a grave threat to peace and stability of Asia and Pacific region. COLAP considers that this crisis will accelerate tension and arms race between India and Pakistan. At the same time, by taking the advantage of this crisis imperialist and communal forces will make the situation complex and misleading. Consequently, the situation will turn into more complicated and conflicting condition. Therefore, for the sake of peace and security of the people of each country of this region, it is very necessary to resolve the crisis through a meaningful dialogue involving all concerned sections in respect of International Laws. COLAP believes that it is necessary to ensure more democracy in Jammu and Kashmir instead of repression. Also the special constitutional status of Jammu and Kashmir should remain intact for resolving the crisis. For peace, there is no alternative to secular principles of Indian constitution and maintaining the ethnic diversity of India.
COLAP says that the people of the State of Jammu and Kashmir have been victims of cross border terrorism, which has been the policy of earlier successive governments of Pakistan ; the people of Jammu and Kashmir in recent years have also been victims of the cross fire between the two governments ; with both governments in recent years pursuing the historically rotten ‘two nation theory of the religious divide’ as a political diversion from the economic issues facing their citizens “.
COLAP deplores the tensions created by both India and Pakistan in the region for internal political purposes as a political diversion , and calls upon the government of India to restore normalcy in the Valley, to permit delegations of Indian citizens to visit the Valley and to restore the Constitutional status of Jammu and Kashmir as an independent province under its Federal Constitution .India and Pakistan are nuclear weapon states ; both are members of the SCO ; both governments are called upon to conduct themselves with maturity and sagacity in the interests of peace, the economic development of their countries and of the Asian Continent .”
COLAP condemns the use of Israeli manufactured cluster pellet gun by the security forces which is prohibited weapons because of its indiscriminatory , disproportionate and widespread nature.
COLAP also calls upon the Government of India to immediately release individuals and leaders of political parties arrested in the crackdown who have not resorted to violence. COLAP calls upon the Government of India to immediately restore trade and all supplies to the region, to mitigate the hardship which the people of Jammu and Kashmir have faced without any provocation.
Democratic and Progressive forces among Lawyers and Jurists in India and ordinary Indian citizens are strongly opposing the recent step of Indian government on Jammu and Kashmir. The COLAP extends its sincere solidarity to this just struggle of Indian democratic and progressive lawyers on this issue.