Terrorizing World – "Enough is enough"

Time to ACT tough . Now !

Indo-Pak static quo

Posted by :) on August 5, 2009

Source – TOI

Jug Suraiya

The babblocracy – the collective name for the policy formulators and so-called opinion-makers in government and media – have put Manmohan Singh in the doghouse. In a joint statement he made in Egypt together with his Pakistani counterpart Yousuf Raza Gilani, the PM deviated from the official ‘line’ on Pakistan. He did not recite the ritualistic mantra that there can be no talks with Islamabad unless Pakistan renounces its covert
support of cross-border terrorism. Secondly, he allowed inclusion of Balochistan in the joint statement. Islamabad has accused New Delhi of fomenting insurrection in Balochistan, in much the same way as India charges Pakistan of sponsoring terrorism in Kashmir and elsewhere in this country. The PM’s detractors claim that by permitting use of the B-word, he implicitly admitted to India’s clandestine involvement in that troubled province, thus legitimising Pakistan’s role in Kashmir.
Such non-reasoning is both specious and paranoid, and it totally misrepresents Manmohan Singh’s intentions and objectives. What were these? To try and break the stalemate that has deadlocked Indo-Pak relations for over 60 years – to the economic, political and social detriment of both countries – by creating a broader, mutually acceptable space for negotiation. In short, Manmohan tried – foolhardily, as it turned out – to try and find a viable and lasting solution to the Indo-Pak enmity which has bedevilled the subcontinent for over six decades.
Sinking into the quicksand of its internal conflicts and contradictions – army rule versus democracy, Taliban versus civil society, regionalism versus central authority – Pakistan needs all the help it can get to save itself. And Manmohan thought – wrongly, as has been made clear to him – that India, in its own best interests, might be able to go not an extra mile, but perhaps an extra inch, in trying to reduce tension between the two countries.

Manmohan’s conciliatory move triggered a virulent backlash in India, with critics making it only too clear that New Delhi should not concede even half an inch to Islamabad, particularly not when the wounds of 26/11are still bleeding in public memory. The Indian PM’s initiative may have been mistimed. But the reaction that it has provoked has brought one aspect of Indo-Pak relations to light: namely, that it is not just Islamabad, but New Delhi as well which has a vested interest in maintaining what might be called the static quo between the two countries.

The general perception in India has been that Islamic, feudal Pakistan has always needed a perpetually adversa
rial India in order to exist. India, on the contrary, with its pluralist democracy and rapidly expanding and increasingly inclusivist economy, has never required the bogey of Pakistan the better to cohere together. The fallout of Manmohan Singh’s statement, however, suggests that democratic, secular, economically buoyant India needs a demonised Pakistan as much as a feudalistic, fundamentalist and bankrupt Pakistan needs a hated and feared India.
Both countries need a whipping boy in each other to keep their respective constituencies in a state of diversionary fear. The ruling establishments in both countries – in Pakistan, the army and the feudal political class; in India, our netas, babus and mediacrats – find it not just convenient but necessary to keep alive the image of an ill-intentioned neighbour who can be used to whip up nationalist emotion, often at the expense of rationalist thought. Unrest in Balochistan? Blame it on India. Militancy in Kashmir? Blame it on Pakistan.
If there had been no Indo-Pak problem, both countries would have had to invent one. Fortunately, there is an Indo-Pak problem. And Manmohan Singh has rightly been rapped across the knuckles for being so irresponsible as trying to disinvent it. What was he thinking of?


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: