“I’m not Malala, I’m free & safe in India”: Kashmiri activist denounces Pakistan’s propaganda mechanism at UK parliament

ANI, Feb 24, 2024, 10:06 AM IST


London: Kashmiri activist and journalist Yana Mir, strongly denounced the propaganda mechanism by Pakistan to “dent India’s image on the international stage” and said that she is completely safe and free in “Kashmir, which is a part of India.”

In her statement at the ‘Sankalp Divas’ hosted by the UK Parliament in London, she urged the international media community to “stop dividing” the people of Jammu and Kashmir.

She even stated that “she is not Malala Yusufzai,” who had to flee her country because of severe threats of terrorism, as her country will always stay strong and united against the forces of terrorism.

“I am not a Malala Yusufzai, because I am free and safe in my country, India. In my homeland, Kashmir, which is part of India. I will never need to run and seek refuge in your country. I will never be a Malala Yusufzai but I object to Malala for defaming my country, my progressive homeland, by calling it oppressed. I object to all such toolkit members from social media and international media, who have never cared to visit Indian Kashmir but fabricate stories of oppression from there,” Mir said in the UK Parliament.

“I urge you to stop polarising Indians on the grounds of religion. We won’t allow you to break us. This year on Sankalp Divas, all I hope for is that our perpetrators living in the UK and Pakistan will stop maligning my country in international media or on international human rights forums. Stop unwanted selective outrage, stop trying to polarise Indian society by reporting from your UK living rooms. Thousands of Kashmiri mothers have already lost their sons because of terrorism. Stop coming after us and let my Kashmiri community live in peace. Thank you and Jai Hind,” she added.

During the event, Mir also received the Diversity Ambassador Award for championing diversity in the J&K region. Furthermore, she outlined the progress following the abrogation of Article 370, emphasising improved security, government initiatives, and fund allocation. Yana also commended the Indian Army’s efforts, including de-radicalization programmes and substantial investments in youth for sports and education, countering media narratives that vilify the Indian Army.

The event marked the unanimous resolution passed by both Houses of the Indian Parliament on February 22, 1994, reaffirming India’s unwavering stance that the entire region of Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of the Indian Territory. It emphasised India’s right to reclaim Mirpur-Muzaffarabad and Gilgit and Baltistan, areas that fell victim to Pakistani aggression.

Attended by over 100 attendees, the gathering included members of UK Parliament, local councillors, community leaders, representatives from various organizations, and prominent members of the diaspora.

Distinguished guests included MP Bob Blackman, MP Theresa Villiers, MP Elliot Colburn, and MP Virendra Sharma. The keynote speakers were Professor Sajjad Raja from Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (POK) who is currently residing in exile in the United Kingdom and Yana Mir, a distinguished Kashmiri activist, who is currently serving as a senior anchor with Bharat Express News Network.

The event provided a comprehensive overview of the socio-cultural and political landscape of Jammu and Kashmir, underscoring the diverse multi-cultural, multireligious and multi-linguistic nature of J&K.

During the event, another participant, Sajjad Raja, underscored the egregious violation of basic human rights in PoK. He urged individuals to voice their concerns and stand against Pakistan’s illegal occupation of PoK.

The event was organised by the Jammu and Kashmir Study Centre UK, a think-tank committed to providing in-depth analysis and research on the Jammu and Kashmir region. It serves as a credible source of comprehensive information, aiming to contribute to informed discussions and understanding of the complexities of the region.

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