Summer hasn’t arrived at Jammu and Kashmir, but the signs are not pleasant. In two fierce meetings with intruders on April 5 and May 3, 10 Indian security personnel, including two senior military officers, have given their lives. From the location and the ferocity of the meeting at Handwara (Kupwara) on May 2-3, one can assume that it was a recently infiltrated Pakistani militant group that lived in the Rajwad forest and had decided to come to the village of Chanjmulla for food and / or shelter and was quickly spotted and intercepted. The tap (Kupwara) was located in the control line and the April 5 meeting was certain with a group of Kashmiri terrorists who had infiltrated.
Mountain trails will soon be negotiated, making it easier for terrorists to infiltrate. Going with this incident, it seems that Pakistan is likely to increase infiltration this summer. Pakistan, a country considered isolated in the world on the issue of terrorism, has once again found a loophole to return to its old tricks. Only last year was the Prime Minister of Pakistan Imran Khan vent his frustration by accusing the western world of ignoring the fate of eight million Kashmiris on the altars of their commercial interests in India.
But international equality changes quickly. We rely too much on international support (read US) in Kashmir, while carrying out dangerous policies internally. And now for President Donald Trump, nothing is more important than his re-election. He was so absorbed in saving his battered image that he would not have time for the eternal Indo-Pak confrontation. In addition, Pakistan has earned several brownie points by giving it much needed fig leaves in Afghanistan.
The Arab world, which excludes Imran Khan’s anger about what happened in India, is now rethinking. Perceptions about India have changed from a secular democracy to a Hindu-majority country in just the past few months. A puzzling voice began to emerge from there.
Some developments in rapid succession in the last five months such as the passing of the Citizenship Act (Amendment), the role of the police in communal violence in Delhi, police violence in Jamia Millia Islamia and Aligarh Muslim University and handling Tablighi Jamaat the problem has been responsible to varying degrees for the same thing. Above all, the perception has been circulating in the Muslim world that the government creates an atmosphere of “Islamophobia” through embedded electronic media and statements or tweets by BJP leaders in the interests of long-term elections. Such an approach would undermine the benefits of our foreign policy for years.
So, who are we going to complain about if the terror infrastructure is revived in Pakistan? World perception of India is very meaningful in dealing with Pakistan. Can we face the situation ourselves? If someone goes with a history of terrorist violence in Jammu and Kashmir, that is certainly not possible. We must remember that the reduction in violence in Kashmir from November 2003 was largely due to the international support received by India vis-à-vis Pakistan on the issue of terrorism.
Furthermore, India cannot fight this proxy war without the support of the people of Kashmir. On the other hand, the policies pursued by this government in Kashmir and other India only alienate Kashmir away from us. Alienation triggers local recruitment. Kashmiri people are suspicious. If not, how can one explain the ongoing detention of political leaders, including former chief minister Mehbooba Mufti? The government feels very insecure and is not sure that it doesn’t even want to renew internet services above 2G in Kashmir.
So how do we proceed? The best way is to return the position before 5 August 2019 to refuse space to Pakistan and its power to create problems. Free all those detained around August 5 last year and let them return to celebrate Eid with their family and friends. Return the democratic process instead of trying to create the King’s parties. Relax all the restrictions imposed last year, including 4G services. Remember, half-way steps don’t seem to work. A politically empowered population is the best antidote to Pakistan’s machinations.
(The writer is a former Intelligence Bureau officer, who served in Pakistan)
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