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After Vax racism, splitting Quad, UK Parl needles India with a debate on Kashmir


Mumbai: Be it the furore over the alleged racism displayed by the United Kingdom (UK) when it comes to vaccines produced and administered in India, or splitting the Quad down the middle, the UK has not stopped at meddling into India’s strategic geo-political considerations. If this was not enough, the UK House of Commons on Thursday is all set to once again debate the alleged Human Rights violations in Jammu and Kashmir, post abrogation of Article 370 on August 5, 2019.

The motion for the debate has been moved by the controversial Labour party MP Debbie Abrahams from Oldham East and Saddleworth. It may be recalled that Debbie Abrahams was not allowed to enter India and was sent back on February 17, 2020 with no reasons given.

The debate in the UK House of Commons comes at a time of the day when Prime Minister Narendra Modi is holding a bilateral meeting with UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) session in New York.

Already the UK has ruffled the feathers with its Vax racism in not recognising Indian vaccine (Covishield) which is being produced in India under a licensed agreement from UK. If that was not enough, by joining the AUKUS, a trilateral security pact between Australia, UK and the United States of America (USA), it has made the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue or the “Quad” (Australia, India, Japan and the US) redundant.

On September 20, two Labour MP’s Debbie Abrahams and Yasmin Qureshi moved a motion for debate on Human Rights in Kashmir. Debbie Abrahams is the Labour MP from Oldham East and Saddleworth since January 2011. While Yasmin Qureshi is the Labour MP from Bolton South East since May 2010. Besides being a Shadow Minister for International Development, Yasmin Qureshi was born in Gujrat City of Punjab province in Pakistan in 1963.

What is pertinent to note here is that ever since the Parliament abrogated Article 370 on August 5, 2019, mostly Labour MPs of Pakistani origins have raised the Kashmir issue through different legislative devices – 17 times through Parliamentary Questions (PQs), once through a Debate and three times through an Early Day Motions (EDMs), right from January 2020 to as recently as September 16, 2021.

In the last one and half years, Labour MPs of Pakistani origins like Afzal Khan representing Manchester Gorton since 2017, has raised the issue through PQs at least three times. Debbie Abrahams herself had tried to raise the issue through an EDM in May 2021. The motion over the Kashmir issue moved on January 13, 2021 lapsed and the House of Commons sitting was adjourned without any questions being put.

The motion for debate is based on the oft repeated cliched allegations of security lockdown, internet shutdowns, alleged curbs on media, alleged abuses of Indian security forces, internet connectivity, municipal elections, reports by human rights groups and media articles and reports.

Prashant Hamine
Prashant Hamine
News Editor - He has more than 25 years of experience in English journalism. He had worked with DNA, Free Press Journal and Afternoon Dispatch. He covers politics.


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