UK Labour Party MP Debbie Abraham’s deportation is not the only evidence of India blocking critical voices. It’s been a pattern and in most cases linked to New Delhi’s inability to digest criticism over the disputed Kashmir region.
UK Labour Party MP Debbie Abrahams was deported from India’s capital New Delhi minutes after she landed there in late February.
Quoting government sources, Indian media reported that Abrahams paid the price for what they called “anti-India acts”, which meant calling out India for unilaterally ending Kashmir’s nominal autonomy in August last year, largely seen as a forcible annexation carried out with the blessings of the far-right Hindu dominated Indian parliament. The decision was widely criticized on both legal and practical terms since it was imposed on Kashmir amidst a severe lockdown followed by the longest internet shutdown the world has ever witnessed.
Although a small number of Indian journalists questioned the government’s decision of sending Abrahams back, the loud and dominant right-leaning journalists backed the move, even accusing her of being a “Pakistan proxy”. Then Indian Twitter followed the chorus, fast turning into a rabid hate-mongering machine, hurling expletives at Abrahams.
Abrahams denied all the allegations saying she had a valid year-long visa issued to her in October last year.
After being blacklisted in India, she reiterated her position on Kashmir: “Again, for clarity, I am PRO human rights and social justice. I will always speak up for people who are not afforded these rights including Kashmiris on both sides of the line of control.”
Abrahams’ is not a rare case of deportation from India. Many other foreign observers, including politicians, journalists and human rights researchers, have been deported from India in the past few years. And Kashmir has been a common feature in several cases.
TRT World / Edited for space by The Islamic Post