Rogue Pak­istan

It was ironic that In­dia’s of­fi­cial state­ment on the brazen in­ci­dent of killing five In­dian soldiers through a cross bor­der raid went through a se­ries of flip flops be­fore fi­nally fix­ing the blame on the Pak­istan Army. This was all the more pitiable when

SP's MAI - - MILITARY -

De­spite the re­cent bar­baric cross bor­der raid by Pak­istan, our po­lit­i­cal hi­er­ar­chy is ea­ger to open im­me­di­ate talks with Pak­istan. The ceas­fire put in place at the line of con­trol (LoC) be­tween In­dia and Pak­istan in Novem­ber 2003, is all but a cha­rade now. Bru­tal killings, cross-bor­der raids, medium and heavy fir­ing with small arms and mor­tars have in­creased ex­po­nen­tially over the past cou­ple of years. This cal­en­dar year alone, there have been 57 ceas­fire vi­o­la­tions by Pak­istan, a whop­ping 80 per cent jump from 2012. The num­ber of in­fil­tra­tion at­tempts have risen dra­mat­i­cally too. But more than any­thing else, it is the in­ten­tion of the Pak­istani Army and In­ter-Ser­vices In­tel­li­gence (ISI) to keep the pot boil­ing in Kash­mir that has not changed, cease­fire or no cease­fire.

Re­call what the then North­ern Army Com­man­der Lt Gen­eral K.T. Par­naik told me dur­ing an in­ter­view on June 17 less than two months ago: “We have to un­der­stand that the in­fra­struc­ture that sup­ports and pro­pels this en­tire proxy war across the bor­der is in­tact, whether they are the train­ing camps or the launch­ing pads or the com­mu­ni­ca­tion fa­cil­i­ties. Se­condly, the con­tin­ued ef­forts of the es­tab­lish­ment in Pak­istan to push the in­fil­tra­tors across the LoC con­tin­ues.

“The num­ber of cease­fire vi­o­la­tions that we have had and a large num­ber of in­ci­dents in which they had tried to breach the LoC and the fence, has been de­tected in the past. So I feel as long as the in­ten­tion on the in­fra­struc­ture doesn’t change, we can­not keep our guard down. While th­ese fig­ures have marginally changed over a pe­riod of time, it is not the num­bers that are im­por­tant, it is the fact that they con­tinue to be there and ev­ery sea­son th­ese camps get ac­ti­vated for train­ing and mo­ti­va­tion. In­tel­li­gence agen­cies have con­firmed that th­ese camps con­tinue to be ac­tive. So they are talk­ing about 42 camps across and 4,000-5,000 is gen­er­ally the strength. They come for train­ing and go away, but the im­por­tant part is why should the ad­ver­sary main­tain th­ese camps, why should they give them the pa­tron­age? They get arms, equip­ment, state-of-the-art com­mu­ni­ca­tion equip­ment and where­withal to carry out in­fil­tra­tion. This it­self high­lights the prob­lems that ex­ist to­day. De­spite a num­ber of di­a­logues, there is no im­prove­ment, that’s why we can’t let our guard down.”

Words of a true pro­fes­sional who fore­saw what is in store.

De­spite all the pro­fessed will­ing­ness showed by Prime Min­is­ter Nawaz Sharif to take the peace process with In­dia for­ward, as long as the Pak­istani Army and ISI along with groups like Lashkar-e-Toiba, re­main in­im­i­cal to In­dia, no amount of dia­logue will calm the sit­u­a­tion on the LoC.

The In­dian es­tab­lish­ment, es­pe­cially those push­ing for talks with Pak­istan at any cost must take this fac­tor into ac­count. Can Sharif en­sure the clo­sure of th­ese camps? Can New Delhi hold Is­lam­abad

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