Given Kashmir’s tortured history, particularly since it fell into the orbit of jihadi terrorism, the intuitive conclusion when daring attacks such as today’s on the CRPF unit in Srinagar are made is that Pakistan is at the root of them.
Home Secretary RK Singh said as much today. The terrorists in today’s attack, he said, came from “across the border”, and the “first impressions are that they are probably from Pakistan.”
But trotting out Pakistan’s involvement every time such an attack happens is an adequate alibi for the government’s failure to provide security – whether it’s Hyderabad or Srinagar - and its handling of both the Kashmir issue and its relations with Pakistan.
If indeed the government genuinely believes that today’s attack was orchestrated by Pakistan, that sentiment should be reflected in the conduct of its relations with Pakistan. Rather than sending out a stern message to Pakistan, the UPA government has been coddling the government. Only on Saturday, External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid hosted a lunch for Pakistan Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashra, who was on a private visit to the Ajmer dargah.
In every other way too, the Manmohan Singh government has signalled that it is merely waiting for a propitious time to restore relations with Pakistan to an even keel and thaw the chill that had set in following the recent flare-up of tension along the Line of Control.
This despite the fact that neither the Pakistani military and the ISI, nor the civilian government has done the slightest to crack down on the terror infrastructure within Pakistan’s borders that are directed at India.
In a sense, it amounts to rewarding Pakistani bad behavior – and provides no incentive for the Pakistani establishment to do even the barest minimum to wind down the terror-purveying organisations.
Clearly, the UPA government’s schizoid policy on Pakistan isn’t helping in any way. Whenever a terror attack occurs, it is quick to blame Pakistan – perhaps deservedly so. But barely does the news cycle spin than the UPA government is back to singing aman ki asha tunes – without securing sufficient redress from Pakistan for its alleged sponsorship of terror.
The UPA government must go on medication to end this bipolar disorder. If Pakistan is behind this attack, it must be subjected to coercive diplomacy to force it to act against the perpetrators within its borders.
The UPA government’s strategy of using Pakistan as an alibi for its own ineptness – both in providing security and in framing a coherent policy on Kashmir – has gone past its sell-by date.
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Updated Date: Mar 14, 2013 05:37:09 IST