A top Indian-American attorney has stated, terror needs to be eradicated, so rights and freedoms mean something. His comments come after several US lawmakers underscored the importance of human rights in Jammu and Kashmir after the eradication of its special status.
The attorney from New York, Ravi Batra’s remarks came while he was replying to a Congressional subcommittee on human rights in South Asia. Mr. Batra told the Subcommittee on Asia, the Pacific, and Nonproliferation of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, “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. The first thing somebody wants before they want human rights, they want to live.”
“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,” Mr. Batra added.
He stated like former US President Abraham Lincoln, Prime Minister Narendra Modi also took extraordinary steps like legal amendments to have the legal authority and then installing a massive force to prevent fatalities in Kashmir from motivated fire-fights by cross-border or home-grown terrorists.
Congressman Eliot Engel, the Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, invited Mr. Batra to testify on this important issue. He referred to PM Modi’s argument in revoking Article 370 of the Constitution that gave special status Jammu and Kashmir.
“He (PM 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,” Mr. Batra highlighted.
“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 added.
Drawing similarity between India’s Jammu and Kashmir and the US states of Louisiana and Alaska, Mr. Batra stated, “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.”