By Arun Joshi
At a time when Prime Minister Narendra Modi is in the United States, some of the anti-India lobbyists have started highlighting what they allege the human rights violations in Jammu and Kashmir without looking at the other side of the prism – the terrorism exported to the Union Territory from across the border.
On Thursday, when Prime Minister had a meeting with the US vice president Kamala Harris, Pakistan sent a large group of armed terrorists to the Indian side of the Line of Control that divides Jammu and Kashmir between India and Pakistan. The Indian army foiled the infiltration bid in Uri sector in north-west Kashmir, killed three of the armed terrorists and seized a huge quantity of arms and ammunition from them. It was a clear example of Pakistan’s bid to cause troubles in Kashmir to undermine the prestige that the US has accorded to Prime Minister.
It was obviously not lost on the American observers, and that was clearer when Kamala Harris censured Pakistan in strong words for its terror activities directed against India. She told Pakistan to tame terrorist groups operating on its soil and take action against them before they could launch their activities into India. The reference, as it appeared, was mostly in the context of Kashmir, where Pakistan has been sponsoring terrorism for decades.
The infiltration of armed terrorists by Pakistan to the Indian side spotlights two troubling facts:; one, despite the reiteration of the ceasefire agreement of February 25, 2021 between the Indian and Pakistani armies, the infiltration has not ended. Secondly, no infiltration is not possible without the direct assistance of the Pakistani army as it controls everything on the other side of the LoC. These are bare-bone facts, but still Pakistan takes refuge in the denial of all these facts.
A wider question opens up, why is Pakistan sending armed terrorists to the Indian side of Jammu and Kashmir if it really wants peace, as it claims, on the border? There is a simple answer to this – Pakistan is keen to create trouble at the borderline so that the Indian army remains engaged with the armed terrorists, and at the same time, a message is lashed to the militants in the hinterland that Pakistan is sending men and arms to replenish their ranks and ammunition.
Of course, this is an old strategy, but what makes it different this time is the fact that this is happening despite reiteration of the ceasefire at the LoC in which the two sides had committed to “ cease all hostilities” in February this year, so, it is clear that Pakistan is undermining the ceasefire. That could possibly lead to the more trouble at the borderline and it could have its ripple-effect in the hinterland.
Pakistan is doing all this in a big way when Modi has been accorded warm welcome by Americans. He has already met Kamala Harris and is scheduled to meet President Biden fir wide-ranging discussions on the global issues as also how to further elevate the bilateral relations.
At this time, by showing that the LoC is having troubles and the Indian security forces are engaged in anti-terrorism operations in the Valley , Pakistan wants to project Kashmir as a disturbed place before the eyes of the world community and particularly, the hosts of Prime Minister in the United States, where he also is scheduled to address the 76th session of the United Nations Gene4ral Assembly. This is essentially an attempt by Pakistan to spoil atmosphere in Kashmir and the prestige and appeal that Prime Minister Modi enjoys at the world stage.
About the Author:
Arun Joshi is a senior journalist based in J&K. He has worked with Hindustan Times, Times of India, Indian Express, and The Tribune. He has authored “ Eyewitness Kashmir: Teetering on Nuclear War” and three other books.
This is the personal opinion of the author. The views expressed in this write up have nothing to do with it.