INDIA NEVER WITHOUT A MASK
It is befuddling to see two faces of India; one face breathing fire and yearning to annihilate Pakistan, and the other singing melodious tunes of peace and friendship. One year before, Indian civil and military leaders were indulging in high pitch saber rattling. Their strike formations had moved up into battle locations and fighter jets had scrambled to strike targets in AJK and Muredke. Indian media and public were up in arms beating war drums. Divorcing sanity and rationalism, Indian leadership accused Pakistan of its involvement in Mumbai attacks and charge-sheeted it without any shred of evidence. They had refused to listen to any explanation and spurned offer of joint investigation. Whatever one-sided evidence was provided to Pakistan was flimsy and fabricated. They got irritated when lies got exposed but USA and UK covered up their concoctions by fully backing them up and putting the entire blame on Pakistan. Their bellicosity has not died down to this date and they are still bent upon trying to coercively impose their will on Pakistan.
On 29 December, Indian army Chief Deepak Kapoor stoked embers of war for the second time in quick succession. No sooner this uncalled for jingoistic statement was made another equally puzzling move was made under the caption of Aman ki Asha (desire for peace). A seminar was organised in New Delhi jointly sponsored by India Times and Jang Group from 10-12 January to promote peace between two arch rivals. Notwithstanding the harmless and well-meaning title, timings of the same were rather odd since it does not fit into the vitiated atmosphere deliberately stoked by India. It is persistently inflating its defence budget and its armed forces are getting laced with latest art-of-weapons and its nuclear program is being radically expanded and upgraded. Added to it are its offensive designs and covert operations against Pakistan. It is in no mood to resolve disputes and ease tensions.
From the time India signed peace treaty with Pakistan in January 2004 and promised to resolve all disputes through composite dialogue, India has not moved an inch towards resolution of any dispute. Major disputes are Kashmir, Siachen, Sir Creek, dams on rivers and water. Past master in foot dragging and making false promises, India kept buying time and under the garb of friendship deceived Pakistan by stabbing it in the back. Its intelligence agencies have been indulging in sabotage and subversion and supporting disruptive forces in Pakistan and making several regions turbulent. Even when RAW’s involvement in Balochistan, FATA and Swat came to light our leaders preferred to remain quiet so as not to antagonize India.
Taking our policy of appeasement as a sign of weakness, RAW and Mossad in consultation with CIA cooked up Mumbai drama. Indian political leaders and media upped the ante and held Pakistan squarely responsible for the carnage without a shred of evidence. Their mentors in USA and UK lent credence to their false claims. The incident planned in a shoddy manner backfired and prestige of shining India got badly bruised. Indian public termed it as an intelligence failure. Intelligence agencies, Indian Navy, Coast Guard, Mumbai security apparatus as well as Army were censured since a band of ten terrorists managed to breach the cordon and held the port city hostage for over 72 hours. Response of security forces was simply pathetic, resulting in lots of fatalities including foreigners and loss of face.
When Pakistan did not get over awed and held its ground firmly on diplomatic and military planes coolly, maturely and boldly, it nonplussed plot makers in India. As the dust settled down and glaring loopholes in the wicked plan started to prop up, it further perplexed them. It irritated them to find Pakistan objecting to their fake pieces of evidence and got panicky when their lies got exposed. Not knowing what to do, they were left with no other option but to keep crying as victims of terrorism and stubbornly clinging on to their ridiculous stance that India would not renew dialogue unless Pakistan acted upon its silly demands of punishing the culprits hpw and dismantling terrorist networks. While expecting a lot from Pakistan, India refuse to admit that it is involved in subversive activities, well knowing that Pakistan has collected heap of evidence.
Hosts of steps taken by Pakistan were disregarded and like USA, it also started to stupidly sing the mantra of ‘do more’. This piggish stance has become all the more necessary to hide their embarrassment since Ajmal Kasab, the lone witness on which the whole case was cleverly spun by Indian agencies has begun to unravel truths while recoding his statement in the law court. He has categorically denied having killed anyone on 26/11 and revealed that he was kidnapped and put in jail much before the incident and on the day of occurrence he was taken to the site, shot and injured. Involvement of local terrorists aided by elements within Indian army and RAW in Samjhota Express and Malegaon acts of terror has already been proven.
In the backdrop of demonstrated Indian bellicosity, Aman ki Asha came as a surprise and left many in Pakistan gaping in wonder as to what to believe and what not to believe. Pro-Indian elements within Pakistan have however hailed the initiative. They have been ignoring Indian clandestine operations together with jingoism and have projected Indo-US theme that religious extremists and not India is the existential threat to security of Pakistan. They laugh and mock those who say that war on terror is US war and not our war. They also ignored Gen Kapoor’s offensive statements but jumped with excitement at the proposed seminar on Aman ki Asha and lauded the idea profusely. In their series of write ups they have projected it as a breakthrough and a step in the right direction towards Indo-Pak détente. None bothered to contemplate that no Indian leader has brought any change in his tone and hawkish style, or taken any confidence building measures (CBM) to ease up tension. List of invitees was prepared from among them.
Aman ki Asha is not meant to promote peace but to once again harm Pakistan through guile and deceit. It has been conceived and sponsored by RAW with devious motives. Real motive behind it is to sidestep real issues of conflict and once again indulge in nonsensical CBMs. It is an effort to hoodwink world comity and to again take Pakistan for a ride. India has somehow come to the conclusion that as a result of Indo-US-Israel-UK eight-year collective efforts, Pakistan has been sufficiently weakened from within and is now in dire strait. In their view the Islamists imbued with warrior spirit who remain ever ready to shed last drop of their blood to defend Pakistan have been antagonized and marginalized while sizeable numbers of soldiers pushed into the quicksand of war on terror for times to come. They feel that time is ripe to dictate terms either through military coercion or through peace mantra and extract maximum concessions. They want peace to be imposed on Indian terms which they perceive will be readily accepted by Pakistan. Pro-Indian lobbies particularly among ultra liberals in Pakistan will actively pursue their agenda.
If India is really interested in peace, it will have to first undo some of the blatant wrongs it inflicted upon Pakistan. It must immediately put an end to its intrusive and meddlesome activities in Pakistan, it should abide by Indus Basin Treaty of 1960 and stop stealing water and building dams on rivers flowing into Pakistan, abide by Indo-Pak agreement on Siachen inked in 1989, resolve Sir Creek issue on which already lot of ground has been covered, stop its vile propaganda against Pakistan, develop relations on the basis of trust, friendship, respect and equality. Above all, longstanding Kashmir dispute which is the main bone of contention should be resolved in accordance with UN Resolutions and pledges of Nehru.
Brig Asif Haroon is a Member Board of Advisors, Opinion Maker. He is a defence and political analysit.