Rajeev Bansal senior journalist
The recent suicide terror attack on CRPF convoy in Pulwama district in South Kashmir by Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM), where 42 unarmed police personnel were martyred, has shocked the collective conscience of the nation.
Though the National Investigation Agency (NIA) and the J&K police are investigating the attack, the release of a video tape by the perpetrator reveals that JeM’s “Afzal Guru” squad was behind it.
The JeM has become quite active in the valley after a hiatus since parliament attack in 2001. It has been propagating the ‘Deobandhi’ ideology of Islam in order to establish ‘Islamic Caliphate’ epicentred on Kashmir.
The recent US-Taliban peace talks seems to have ideologically emboldened JeM and their mentor’s in ISI appeared to have given them a new purpose of waging war against Indian state at a time when US is pulling out of Afghanistan.
Why China is supporting terrorsim ?
What is more surprising is that the Chinese reluctance to change their stand on listing of Mazood Azhar as a global terrorist by the UN Security Council.
It seems that China may attempt to fill the strategic vacuum in Afghanistan once US withdraws itself and then it direly needs the support of pro-Taliban groups such JeM to protect its interests.
It is interesting to note that even after international community had blamed China for human rights violation in Xinjiang where the ethnic Muslims were brutally tortured in the concentration camps, neither JeM nor Taliban have condemned it.
Moreover, China is concerned about its asserts being created in Pojk and troubled regions in Afghanistan under rubric of Belt Road Initiative (BRI). The Pulwama attack cannot be seen only through the prism of Kashmir conflict rather it has trans-regional dimensions too.
In the last two days the entire nation was outraged by this incident and people were out on street with rage demanding a strong and befitting response to this act. Unlike in the past where such incidents would settle down with a knee-jerk responses from the government of the day, it seems that this attack should be construed as an act of war against the Indian state in order the test the resolve of the political leadership especially the Modi government, which is completing its tenure and is looking forward to form the government again after the general elections, which is scheduled in May 2019.
The incumbent Modi’s government will replicate the Obama moment to retaliate for Pulwama attack or usual protest and cutting of diplomatic dialogue for temporarily. The selective attacks inside of Pakistan will also arouse nationalistic feelings among BJP supporters which in turns favour to him in upcoming general election.
Jammu is full of anger For the first time, Jammu region witnessed a public outburst against the attack. Incidents of arson and mass rally were reported. Youth carrying national flag and shouting ‘Pakistan Murdabad’ slogan’s echoed most of busy streets and chowks of Jammu city.
Jammu chambers of Commerce called for a bandh in protest towards the incident. Entire Law & Order was brought down to an extent that army had to cancel their routine patrols.
Despite the Prime Minister’s stated assurance that the sacrifice of soldiers will not go in vain and the emergency meetings of Cabinet Council on Security decision to revoke the ‘ MFN’ status, the public angst is all time high.
The international community especially US and Russia expressed solidarity with Indian government and offered unconditional support to upheld India’s right to Self-Defence, which is unprecedented.
What are the options before the government of India?
Or how India should respond to this attack? These are questions that reverberate in the hearts and minds of every sensible citizens of this country.
First, New Delhi should moot resolution in the UN to declare Pakistan as a ‘terror state’ and severe all diplomatic ties. Second, an ultimatum should be given to the Pakistan government to extradite Mazood Azhar and LeT operatives to India for trail immediately. If they fail to respond to the later, India should prepare for a limited strike and destroy Pakistani military posts along the LoC.
It is to be mentioned that the Surgical Strike was solely aimed to destroy the terror infrastructure. But, until the support base for terror groups, which is actually the Pakistan army, military assets and infrastructures are destroyed, these groups would continue to thrive and perpetuate terrorism in Kashmir. It sounds too hawkish but sometime a surgery is inevitable when the wound becomes so deep and bleeding.
India can calibrate the attack and keep it at below the nuclear threshold. Economically ailing Pakistan with large scale investments are already in place in the PoK by the Chinese companies, it is most unlikely that Pakistan would dare to engage in nuclear blackmailing with India.
By do so India can not only boast the morale of the soldiers deployed in the valley but also assure the rest of the country that under the present dispensation in New Delhi the business with the ‘Terroristan’ i.e Pakistan is no longer as usual.