Calling terrorism “the worst form of violation of human rights”, India has decried attempts by some countries to prevent a unified international response to the threat.
“Terrorism has emerged as one of the worst forms of violation of human rights… My country has had to face repeated terrorist attacks on innocent people, emanating from beyond our borders,” India’s Deputy Permanent Representative Tanmaya Lal said in United Nations on Friday.
“Despite terrorism being acknowledged as one of the foremost global challenges, any meaningful collective response to address this menace continues to be thwarted by some.”
Lal’s remarks during a General Assembly session on the Human Rights Council report were aimed at the failure of the world body to adopt the Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism (CCIT) proposed by India in 1996.
The draft of the convention has failed to make headway in the 22 years because of the failure of countries to agree even on who is a terrorist, with some claiming exemptions for whom they would label “freedom-fighters”.
Lal did not directly mention the CCIT or the report of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights on Kashmir, which also came in for implied criticism.
He said that human rights “mechanisms operating on their own without any mandate and producing clearly biased documents only further harm the credibility of UN”.
One of the grounds for India’s criticism of the Kashmir report is that it was prepared without any mandate from the Human Rights Council or any UN body.
India also said that it was biased and “based on unverified sources of information”.
“Country-specific procedures have largely been counter-productive,” he added.
Domestically, Lal said, “India’s approach to human rights continues to evolve as more rights become justiciable and through the process of progressive interpretation of laws by the judiciary”.
The Supreme Court’s recent landmark decision to decriminalise gay sex is an example of the judiciary extending civil rights through its interpretation of the constitution.