Indian human rights activists on Monday renewed an appeal for an international inquiry into reports of mass graves in Indian-administered Kashmir, rebuffing claims by Srinagar’s police chief that there were none.
“By claiming that there are no mass graves in [Indian-administered] Kashmir, the authorities are trying to whitewash their crimes,” Gautam Navlakha told Kashmir News Service (KNS) in an interview.
Earlier, Srinagar police director general Ashok Prasad questioned the veracity of reports of mass graves in Kashmir.
“Mass graves and unmarked graves … which are common in Kashmir … are two distinct things. To the best of my knowledge, six infiltrators from the other side of the border are buried in the largest mass grave [in Kashmir],” he said, adding, “This is an effort to create an issue out of nothing and bring other players into the game.”
Navlakha, however, estimated that there were more than 6,700 mass graves in Indian-administered Kashmir.
“This is a crazy state of affairs… [the authorities] are trying to nullify the truth,” he said, adding that the chief minister of Indian-administered Kashmir had himself admitted there were mass graves in the region.
He accused the Indian authorities of trying to distance themselves from the issue by stating they lacked the forensic facilities to probe the matter and urged the international community to intervene and uncover the truth about mass graves.
Published in The Express Tribune, December 24th, 2013.
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