JKCHR was established as an NGO in 1984 and listed in the register of Charities in England and Wales in 1992.
The Economic and Social Council of the United Nations at it’s Substantive Session on July 2001 granted special consultative status to Jammu and Kashmir Council for Human Rights (JKCHR). The organization was invited to designate official representatives to the United Nations – to the United Nations head quarters in New York and to United Nations offices in Geneva and Vienna”.
JKCHR’s first, distinguished and formalized work in Kashmir dates back to May 1987 when a paper entitled “The Abuse of Power”, in Indian controlled Jammu and Kashmir, was presented at the 3rd International Conference on ‘Victims and the Criminal Justice System’, at Inter University Centre, Dubrovnik – former Yugoslavia.
The NGO also co-chaired a Session of the Conference with China and Finland. JKCHR is the first NGO, which launched Relief and Medical Assistance for the Refugees in Azad Kashmir, in December 1990 and set up a Centre for Victims of Torture and Rape in 1991. JKCHR launched relief work on 15 December 2001 in District Baramulla, Indian controlled Kashmir.
During the last 12 years of militancy it was the first relief provision in District Baramulla. The NGO organizes free medical camps in various parts of Valley and is in the process of constructing a Community Centre near Baramulla to service the various needs of the community. It is the first NGO that reported on 10 January 1990 to the UN the first killings in Kashmir by Indian Security Forces during night of the 8th and 9th January 1990. JKCHR is the first NGO that was telegraphically invited on 04 April 1990 by the United Nations to a meeting to discuss its communication dated 10 January 1990.
On 6th July 1990 JKCHR delegation discussed a 13 item agenda with the Chief of Special Procedures Section and heads of Summary Executions, Torture and Disappearances Sections and Asia and Middle East Head of U. N. H. C. R in Geneva. It was for the first time since Kashmir featured at the UN on 6th January 1948, that this NGO lodged a complaint against India under ECOSOC Resolution 1503 against ‘gross and systematic’ violation of Human Rights.
JKCHR Secretary General Dr. Syed Nazir Gilani was elected on behalf of Unrepresented Peoples and Nations on the 33 member NGO Liaison Committee at the UN World Conference on Human Rights in Vienna, in June 1993. Secretary General JKCHR addressed the Plenary and the Main Committee of the UN World Conference on Human Rights. Indian delegation to the Conference was lead by Mr. Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Begum Nusrat Bhutto headed the Pakistan delegation to the Conference.
Mr. Vajpayee and Bugum Bhutto addressed the Plenary of the Conference on behalf of their respective countries. JKCHR Secretary General is a member of International Platform of Jurists for East Timor [IPJET] since 1985 and has continued to contribute to the question of Self-Determination of East Timor. In February 1994 the NGO was one of the sponsors of The Third Global Structures Convocation on “Human Rights, Global Governance and strengthening the United Nations”.
JKCHR addressed an appeal to the Assembly urging it to assist India and Pakistan in stopping to invoke the enemy image of each other, so that the two countries could unlock their men and material, otherwise locked to respond to an inherent threat and divert the freed resources to development, health, education, elimination of hunger and peace projects.
The appeal asked the UN to re-orient its priorities to accomplish its role in Kashmir. JKCHR work on Women, Children, Victims of Torture and Rape, Displaced Persons, Prisoners, Missing People and Violations of Human Rights in Kashmir, on Respect and Observance of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, is acknowledged at the national, regional and international levels. The NGO assists Kashmiris in various parts of the world and disadvantaged under various conditions. It has helped in the release of Kashmiri prisoners in the United Kingdom and Kashmiris in their claim for asylum in Switzerland, France, Greece, Hong Kong and various other countries.
Support and assistance is provided to non-Kashmiris as well. The NGO remains guided by common ‘humanitarian concern’. JKCHR has continued to maintain its lead in issue oriented work. It works to advance the belief that “The effects of war are immediate, but those of peace, far beyond and far reaching. The NGO is playing a lead role in the understanding of the jurisprudence of the Kashmir case. It has successfully argued constitutional writ petitions in the superior courts of Azad Kashmir.