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United Kashmir People’s National Party concerned over land grabbing by Pakistan in PoK, Gilgit Baltistan

London [United Kingdom], June 10 (ANI): The United Kashmir People’s National Party (UKPNP) in a memorandum addressed concerns regarding the ongoing illegal land grabbing, construction on valuable tourist resorts, green belts, and the increasing rate of deforestation by Pakistan in areas of Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK) and Gilgit Baltistan.

As per recent reports, construction activities in Lesdana in District Bagh, Neelum and Peer Chinasi in Districts Muzaffarabad are encroaching upon these fragile ecosystems, leading to irreversible damage.

UKPNP in a memorandum addressed to the Pakistan High Commissioner in London, demanded that Pakistan should refrain from land grabbing, allocating land to its citizens in disputed areas of Jammu Kashmir. Illegal occupation and construction on tourist spots and green belts play a crucial role in preserving the natural habitat and cultural heritage. These areas are not only essential for the local population but also attract a significant number of domestic tourists.

UKPNP has serious concerns about intimidation and harassment of the Kashmiri nationalist witch hunt of the United Kashmir People`s National Party (UKPNP) and its student wing activists United Kashmir National Student Organization UKNSO.

In Muzaffarabad, PoK peaceful student activists of KNSO Raja Noman Asif, Raja Atsham, Irfan Ahmed, and Fasial Auranzaib were arrested on a fabricated charge facing torture and life threats. Meanwhile, freedom of peaceful assembly and of association serve as a vehicle for the exercise of many other rights guaranteed under international law.

Another pressing issue that demands immediate attention is Deforestation. The loss of forests not only disrupts the ecological balance but also affects the climate, wildlife habitats, and the overall health and well-being of communities living around. Pakistan hasn’t made any commendable efforts in the past decades to tackle deforestation, but it is disheartening to witness the continued destruction of forests and other natural resources.

The London-based party in the memorandum issued on Thursday strongly condemned restrictions on the freedom of Expression, Association, and Peaceful Assembly in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) and Gilgit Baltistan.

The Pakistani government imposes stringent limitations on freedom of expression, association, and peaceful assembly. By so doing, the government violates with impunity Articles 19 and 20 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Dissenting voices, including journalists, nationalist Kashmiris, rights activists, and ordinary citizens, are targeted and harassed.

Serious concerns have been expressed about violating the Jammu Kashmir State Subject Rule 1927 in PoK and Gilgit Baltistan. Pakistan is blatantly disregarding the State Subject Rule 1927, allowing outsiders to purchase property in PoK and Gilgit Baltistan.

Islamabad is allocating forestry land, hilltops, and tourist resorts to its military and officers while issuing domiciles of PoK and Gilgit Baltistan to its citizens. This deliberate geostrategic act aims to alter and confuse the demographic reality of disputed areas of Po and Gilgit Baltistan, thereby violating international law and UNCIP resolutions on Kashmir. Upholding this rule and preserving the demography of these territories is crucial.

The memorandum read, “Therefore, we the concerned citizens, and stalwarts of the United Kashmir People’s National Party (UKPNP)’ urge the government of Pakistan through your office to take immediate action to withdraw all fabricated charges against peaceful political activists of UKNSO and release them immediately and unconditionally, immediately halt all construction on tourist spots and green belts throughout Pakistan occupied Kashmir and also in Gilgit-Baltistan.”

“We demand that the Pakistan government enforce strict regulations to prevent further encroachment on these valuable areas. Instead, efforts should be made to promote sustainable development goals, and tourism practices and preserve the natural beauty of both peripheries under its temporary administration of Pakistan.”

The memorandum added: “Implement measures to combat deforestation and repeal all unlawful taxes in the electricity bills. We urge the Pakistan government to implement forest protection laws and allocate sufficient resources for reforestation efforts. Collaborating with local communities, non-governmental organizations, and international partners can help create a sustainable and resilient forest ecosystem.” (ANI)

This report is auto-generated from ANI news service. ThePrint holds no responsibility for its content.

Source: The Print

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