Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Can India bring a Change ?

In the name of ‘ Marathi Manus’ , when Raj Thackeray and his cronies were mercilessly beating innocent young students from Bihar and Taxi drivers from UP, I as a Marathi Manus, never felt a wrath from North Indians in any part of India. They all attributed lunatic regional chauvinistic behavior of Raj on his own personal political agenda. In my visit to Sri Lanka, being an Indian did not bring any derision from Sinhalese Srilankans despite IPKF aggravating the conflict between LTTE and Sri Lanka Govt forces.

Would an Indian think the same towards a Pakistani national against the backdrop of Mumbai terror? Although, I would like him to do so but in all probability average Indian will be coaxed or incited to bring renewed hatred towards Pakistan citizen.

Despite an easy temptation to do so, I feel India should not be trapped into a game plan of Al Qaeda. India is on roll over last decade but its galloping economic juggernaut can stutter only with her internal disorder. Its irony that while India is on the threshold of becoming large economy, her immediate neighbor is on the brink of disintegration from sectarian violence. There is no denying that India’s progress links with Pakistan's stability and Pakistan’s stability hinges on to India’s defense postures. At this juncture, India and Pakistan are not on the opposite side but on the same side opposite that of all terrorist outfits. First time in the history of both nations, USA is there to support both India and Pakistan while Russia remains silent embroiled in its own internal problems. If both India and Pakistan fight together against Lashkar and Al Qaeda, both countries will spare precious resources from war mongering postures and use them for the benefit of the respective society. And India has to take a lead on this. So far, every Indian Govt has resorted to stoking anti Pakistan passion in order to subvert the attention from its failures. Would this Govt be any different?

Every sane person on either side of the border knows that terrorist outfits are now out of control of Pakistan Government. In fact, during 60 years of Pakistan history, hardly any government has remained in power without the blessings of her Army. Present Pakistan Govt is not just on slippery and dangerous track but also on edge of precipice with either side has a valley of dire economic consequences and war turmoil. Various forces that are ready to pull apart its national existence are overeager to corner Pakistan. It is seeking immediate US$7Billion to avoid default on loan payments. On western frontier, USA is intruding its territory to confront Afghan terrorists. As a consequence, people in the North West frontier are turning hostile to Islamabad. Both Baluchistan and Karachi are in thick of sectarian violence. Fragile new Govt of Pakistan is vulnerable with political opponents waiting for an opportunity to settle old scares and disgruntled army functionaries who have divided loyalties between religion and the country. First time, Pakistan Govt is sincere and in conciliatory tone, “we are not part of Mumbai terror!”

Would India’s leadership be visionary in looking at broader picture? Can they act out of Box? Can they think beyond next general election? Would this happen? I wish they do. Here is a chance for India to take the mantle of subcontinent leadership. It can use this opportunity to step up the interaction among its people. Like IPL cricket league team, that shares players from both sides, they can form a defense front comprising commandoes from both countries, do joint patrol on the sea routes and let both armies manage Kashmir and bust terrorist camps on western border. All this appear far-fetched but not impossible. Pakistan has a democratically elected Govt is in power and its in India’s interest that Pakistan consolidate its democratic institutions. If India does not do that, we miss an opportunity to take both the countries further and make them succumb to the common inimical forces that would take progress clock backwards.

As a Marathi, I was fortunate not go down in the eyes of Non Marathi people. Would average peace loving, progressive Pakistan National has the same opportunity to do in the eyes of Indian national. Clearly, onus is on India, its nationals and her leadership.

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Blogger Jaya said...

To optimise our resources with our neighbouring country to fight terrorism is a wonderful idea albeit and little far fetched - Pak has been an unfortunate playground of bigger politics and is as big a victim today as anyone else. I feel sorry for their moderate millions (as I have many good, far sighted Paki friends) who are trapped by the dictats of their religion and the tragic fall out of jihad They will be choked to death for sure if they try to raise their voice. We atleast can voice our opinion freely...
You have made a marvellous comparision though of being the victim of the agressive fundamentalist minority,who are constantly expressing their angst on belalf of the moderate majority.

7:53 PM  
Anonymous Subbaraman Iyer said...

First, let's recognize the reality over which most Indians are in denial. While most countries have an army, in pakistan, the army has a country. Since Gen Ayub Khan, the military has always called the shots. So, while Zardari and geelani can occupy the positions of power, the real power has always been wielded by the Military.

Nothing exemplifies this phenomenon better than when Vajpayee was had finished his famous Lahore bus trip, Gen Musharraf started the Kargil attack. There are several instances of the duplicity of the Pakistan administration and the Military that I can cite.

Let me come to the current issue now. The jihadis or the LeT have the active support of the Pakistan Army. The most current evidence being that the Indian embassy in Kabul was bombed and all intelligence reports (US, India, UK) reported the incontrovertible hand of the Pak ISI.

The relationship with the Taleban/Al Queda is part of the pakistan's military strategic arrangements.

Pakistan is the only country where the military has sponsored terrorism both directly and indirectly starting from Gen Zia's regime. The Pakistan government has always played a game which suited it and everyone knows that the Military establishment can get rid of any politican who does not toe the line.

Let's differentiate between country sponsored terrorism and personal friendships and prejudices. Just using a broad brush and trying to arrive at similarities is either a sign of naivety or just using the wrong frame of reference.

1:03 AM  
Anonymous Anu P said...

It may be tough but not impossible. Wisdom must dawn on all concerned. If both countries goal is same then why not.

Like IPL cricket league team, that shares players from both sides, they can form a defense front comprising commandoes from both countries, do joint patrol on the sea routes and let both armies manage Kashmir and bust terrorist camps on western border. I liked this

Its important for many to know this
that it's not just sport and music.
That jugalbandi can be done in areas to have a common religion - humanism.

11:33 AM  

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