Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai on Saturday urged the United Nations to help children in Kashmir go back to school. “I am asking leaders, at #UNGA and beyond, to work towards peace in Kashmir, listen to Kashmiri voices and help children go safely back to school,” tweeted the Pakistani education activist.
Normal life in Kashmir has been severely hit since August 5, when the state’s special status was scrapped. Though some of the restrictions remain, landline connectivity has been restored across the state while mobile phone connections are reportedly working in Jammu.
Yousafzai said she was deeply concerned after reports said that students have not been able to attend school for more than 40 days while people have been arbitrarily arrested. “I wanted to hear directly from girls living in Kashmir right now,” said the 22-year-old activist. “It took a lot of work from a lot of people to get their stories because of the communications blackout. Kashmiris are cut off from the world and unable to make their voices heard. #LetKashmirSpeak.”
However, Yousafzai’s comments did not go down well with a Bharatiya Janata Party MP from Karnataka. Shobha Karandlaje said Yousafzai should instead raise her voice against the “forceful conversion and persecution of minority girls in her own country”.
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