After Eenam Gambhir’s impactful speech at the UN last year following the Uri attacks, the Indian government is keen to send young women diplomats to respond to Pakistan. At the recent United Nations Human Rights Council meeting in Geneva, 2008 batch officer Nabanita Chakrabarti spoke out against Islamabad. She was guided by two senior diplomats sitting on either side of her.
This is a new phenomenon where female diplomats are encouraged to speak out at such a prestigious platform in front of several countries.
The Pakistani envoy spoke first, flagging many allegations on India and then came Chakrabarti’s turn to respond to them in a powerful speech. She said Pakistan’s envoy has chosen to misuse the Human Rights Council to make fallacious references about internal matters pertaining to the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir.”
She added without taking Pakistan’s name, “Terrorism is the grossest violation of human rights and should be so acknowledged by any impartial and objective observer.”
Chakrabarti talked about Pakistan’s mention of minorities in India and explained, “…Pakistan has referred to the situation of minorities in India. Minorities in India have been prime ministers, presidents, vice-presidents, senior cabinet ministers, senior civil servants, cricket team captains, Bollywood superstars. Can the minorities of Pakistan claim even a shadow of this? All they have are blasphemy laws and relentless abuse and violation of their human rights.”
Ties between India and Pakistan are in a bad state currently. The string of militant attacks on defence groups working in Punjab and Kashmir which the central government blames on terrorist groups working out of Pakistan is one of the major reasons for the low down in diplomatic relations between the two countries. Pakistan has consistently been denying the claims and states that the country itself is quite at the receiving end of terrorism.
In September last year, Gambhir gave a crisp response from the Indian contingent to Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s speech the UN General Assembly. Chakrabarti’s speech was similar in tenor to the one by Gambhir.
Picture credit- Rajya Sabha TV