GUWAHATI: The United Nations Human Rights Council today appealed to both the Indian government as well as the farm law protesters on Delhi borders to “exercise maximum restraint” and find an “equitable solutions with due respect to human rights for all”.
The apex human rights watchdog took to its Twitter handle to appeal: “#India: We call on the authorities and protesters to exercise maximum restraint in ongoing #FarmersProtests. The rights to peaceful assembly & expression should be protected both offline & online. It's crucial to find equitable solutions with due respect to #HumanRights for all.”
The tweet was, however, taken with a pinch of salt in India when scientist- entrepreneur Dr Viswaraja Sashikumar replied: “500 policemen were injured in the protests. Police didn't use any weapon. How much more restraint is needed. Any human rights for the uniform? UN hypocrisy at its best.”
The UN on Friday backed the agitation started by thousands of farmers against the government’s three newly enacted contentious agriculture laws, saying they have a right to protest peacefully and the authorities must allow them to do so.
UN secretary general Antonio Guterres’ spokesperson Stephane Dujarric said: “As to the question of India, what I would say to you is what I’ve said to others when raising these issues is that people have a right to demonstrate peacefully, and authorities need to let them do so.”
The farmers’ protest in India has received support from other countries too. A group of British MPs on Friday wrote a letter to the United Kingdom foreign secretary Dominic Raab urging him to express concern about the protests to India. They described the new farm laws as a “death warrant” for Punjab, which is also known as India’s bread basket.
The MPs, mostly comprising Labour party members, also requested the foreign secretary to call an urgent meeting to discuss the “deteriorating” situation in Punjab. The MPs said that protests “are of particular concern to Sikhs in the UK” as many of them have family members and ancestral land in Punjab.
Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau also once again expressed solidarity with Indian farmers today even as India said that his comments were “an unacceptable interference” in India’s internal affairs. The ministry of external affairs summoned the Canadian high commissioner over Trudeau’s remarks.
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