It took just three powerful women from India to expose Pakistan’s lies on terrorism at the UN General Assembly this year. From India’s External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, young diplomats at Permanent Mission of India in UN – Eenam Gambhir and Paulomi Tripathi – Pakistan received a verbal response it may have never expected. Apparently irked by its growing political isolation because of terrorism, Pakistan tried to attack India with lies that eventually haunted the Islamic country back at the international forum itself – thanks to the three women.
Pakistan Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi started the verbal war first by raking up the Kashmir issue at the UNGA. Abbasi alleged that struggle of people in Kashmir was “brutally suppressed” by India. While remaining silent on the terror sponsored by his country and exported to India and other regions – a fact now known to the world, Abbasi accused India of indulging in terror activities against Pakistan. He even warned of a “matching response”. In his maiden speech as Pakistan PM at the UN, Abbasi said, “The Kashmir dispute should be resolved justly, peacefully and expeditiously. As India is unwilling to resume the peace process with Pakistan, we call on the Security Council to fulfil its obligation to secure the implementation of its own resolutions on Jammu and Kashmir.”
“To this end, the UN secretary general should appoint a special envoy on Kashmir. His mandate should flow from the longstanding but unimplemented resolutions of the Security Council,” Abbasi said.
The Pakistan PM claimed his military has maintained restrain despite 600 ceasefire violations by India. “But if India does venture across the LoC, or acts upon its doctrine of limited war against Pakistan, it will evoke a strong and matching response,” he said. In his speech, Abbasi mentioned Kashmir a total of 17 times and India 14 times among other things. And even claimed that that from day one of its creation, Pakistan has faced unremitting hostility from its India.
Despite strong anti-India rhetoric, Abbasi said Pakistan is open to resuming a comprehensive dialogue. “This dialogue must be accompanied by an end to India’s campaign of subversion and state sponsored terrorism against Pakistan, including from across our western border,” Abbasi said.
Abbasi’s anti-India claim, however, backfired when Indian diplomat at the Permanent Mission to UN, Eenam Gambhir thoroughly exposed his lies.
Exercising India’s right to reply, Gambhir said, “It is extraordinary that the state which protected Osama Bin Laden and sheltered Mullah Omar should have the gumption to play the victim. By now, all Pakistan’s neighbours are painfully familiar with these tactics to create a narrative based on distortions, deception and deceit. This august Assembly and the world beyond know that efforts at creating alternative facts do not change reality.”
“In its short history, Pakistan has become a geography synonymous with terror. The quest for a land of pure has actually produced “the land of pure terror”. Pakistan is now ‘Terroristan’, with a flourishing industry producing and exporting global terrorism. Its current state can be gauged from the fact that Hafiz Mohammed Saeed, a leader of the UN designated terrorist organization Lashkar-i-Taiba, is now sought to be legitimized as a leader of a political party. This is a country whose counter terrorism policy is to mainstream and upstream terrorists by either providing safe havens to global terror leaders in its military town, or protecting them with political careers.
“We also heard Pakistan complain about the consequences of its supposed counter terrorism efforts. Having diverted billions of dollars in international military and development aid towards creating a dangerous infrastructure of terror on its own territory, Pakistan is now speaking of the high cost of its terror industry. The polluter, in this case, is paying the price,” Gambhi said, adding, “Even as terrorists thrive in Pakistan and roam its streets with impunity, we have heard it lecture about the protection of human rights in India. The world does not need lessons on democracy and human rights from a country whose own situation is charitably
described as a failed state.”
Pakistan received a big reality check when EAM Sushma Swaraj took the stage.
Look who’s talking
“We (India) are completely engaged in fighting poverty; alas, our neighbour Pakistan seems only engaged in fighting us. On Thursday, from this dais, Pakistan’s Prime Minister ShahidKhakan Abbasi wasted rather too much of his speech in making accusations against us. He accused India of State-sponsored terrorism, and of violating human rights. Those listening had only one observation: ‘Look who’s talking!’ A country that has been the world’s greatest exporter of havoc, death and inhumanity became a champion of hypocrisy by preaching about humanity and human rights from this podium.
“Pakistan’s Prime Minister claimed that his nation’s founder Mohammad Ali Jinnah had bequeathed a foreign policy based on peace and friendship. I would like to remind him that while it remains open to question whether Jinnah Sahab actually advocated such principles, what is beyond doubt is that India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi has, from the moment he took his oath of office, offered the hand of peace and friendship. Pakistan’s Prime Minister must answer why his nation spurned this offer.
“I would like today to tell Pakistan’s politicians just this much, that perhaps the wisest thing they could do is to look within. India and Pakistan became free within hours of each other. Why is it that today India is a recognised IT superpower in the world, and Pakistan is recognised only as the pre-eminent export factory for terror? What is the reason for this?
“India has risen despite being the principal destination of Pakistan’s nefarious export of terrorism. There have been many governments under many parties during 70 years of Indian freedom, for we have been a sustained democracy. Every government has done its bit for India’s development. We have marched ahead, consistently, without pause, in Education, Health and across the range of human welfare and created Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs), Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) and All India Institutes of Medical Sciences (AIIMS). We established scientific and technical institutions which are the pride of the world.
“But what has Pakistan offered to the world and indeed to its own people apart from terrorism? We produced scholars, doctors, engineers and scientists. What have you produced? You have produced terrorists, Lashkar-e-Taiba, Jaish-e-Mohammed, HizbulMujahideen, Haqqani network and terror camps. Doctors save people from death; terrorists send them to death. Your terrorist organisations are not only attacking India but are also affecting our two neighbours, Afghanistan and Bangladesh. In the history of United Nations General Assembly, it may be the first time that a country asked for a right of reply and it had to answer to three countries. Does this not depict the reality of your actions? If Pakistan had spent on its development what it has spent on developing terror, both Pakistan and the world would be safer and better-off today.”
Pakistan responded to Swaraj by using fake photo. Pakistan’s Permanent Representative to the UN Maleeha Lodhi presented an image of a girl from Gaza as a victim of pellet guns in Kashmir. “This is the face of Indian democracy,” Lodhi said of the
picture which had no connection with Kashmir.
The real picture
Paulomi Tripathi, a junior most Indian diplomat at the Permanent Mission of India to the United Nations, exposed Pakistan’s lies. “The Permanent Representative of Pakistan, in her statement, yet again sought to divert attention from Pakistan’s role as the hub of global terrorism. She did so by callously holding up a picture of an injured girl. It was a photograph of Rawya abu Jom’a, a girl from Palestine. The picture was taken on 22 July 2014 by an American photographer Heidi Levine. This photograph was published by New York Times on 24 March 2015 under the caption ‘Conflict, Courage and Healing in Gaza’.
“The Permanent Representative of Pakistan misled this Assembly by displaying this picture to spread falsehoods about India. A fake picture to push a completely false narrative.”
Tripathi further said, “In view of this cynical and misleading attempt by Pakistan, we are constrained to show this Assembly, a photograph that reflects the real picture of pain inflicted by the nefarious designs of Pakistan on India. This is a real and not a fake picture of Lt. Umar Faiyaz. A young officer from the Indian State of Jammu and Kashmir. Umar Faiyaz was kidnapped at a wedding celebration. He was brutally tortured and killed by Pakistan supported terrorists in May 2017.”
India had carried out Surgical Strikes last year on September 29 on terror launch pads in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.