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India and UN human rights chief clash over farmers’ protests | India News


NEW DELHI: India and UN Human Rights Chief Michelle Bachelet clashed on Friday when the latter hit the government about farmers’ protests and their recent action against journalists and activists. In its response, the government said that Bachelet’s remarks lacked “objectivity and impartiality,” reports Sachin Parashar.
Charges of sedition against journalists and activists for reporting or commenting on farmers’ protests, and attempts to curb freedom of expression on social media, were disturbing deviations from essential human rights principles, said the High Commissioner for Human Rights. United Nations for Human Rights in its global update speech. on Friday. Bachelet also raised concerns about restrictions on communications at J&K.
India responded with a statement by Permanent Representative Indra Mani Pandey in which he said that Bachelet seemed oblivious to the “enormous efforts” made by the government to address the challenges, as indeed, many of the factors driving these challenges.
“The unprovoked violence on our Republic Day in the name of farmers’ rights apparently left her indifferent. Her indifference to terrorism, of course, is not new. Objectivity and impartiality should be the hallmarks of any human rights assessment. I’m sorry to see the high commissioner’s oral update missing from both, “Pandey said.
The UN official also said in her speech that continued protests by hundreds of thousands of farmers highlighted the importance of ensuring that laws and policies are based on “meaningful consultation with stakeholders.”
“I am confident that ongoing dialogue efforts by both sides will lead to an equitable solution to this crisis that respects the rights of all,” said Bachelet, whose office had said earlier this month that the rights of peaceful assembly and expression must protect yourself both offline and offline. online.
In his response, Pandey said that India had set a goal of doubling farmers’ incomes by 2024 and that the purpose of enacting the three farm laws was to enable farmers to obtain better prices for their products and improve their income. On J&K, he said that the decision to revoke the special status of the former state had given a boost to socio-economic development and efforts to combat cross-border terrorism, which had been the “key obstacle” to the full enjoyment of human rights by the people. .
Bachelet, who has been involved in repeated clashes with India in the past, also said that despite the recent restoration of 4G access for mobile phones, the communications blockade had seriously hampered civic engagement, as well as business, media life, education and access to health and medical information. He said that restrictions on communications and the crackdown on civil society activists remained a cause for concern.
“The raids on human rights defenders in October and November exemplify the continued restrictions placed on civil society and the resulting impact on the rights of the Kashmiri people to impart and receive information, and to participate in free and open policy debate. governments that affect them. ” Bachelet said.
Regarding inclusion and participation, the official said she was encouraged by her office’s recent experience in a pilot program in Kerala, where officials, civil society organizations and community leaders had used innovative technology to ensure that people’s voices marginalized and poor were heard and their needs addressed in the response to the pandemic.

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