India’s befitting response to Pak propaganda at the UN: Pak sinister designs demand a holistic strategy


Pakistan’ métier is not only in exporting terrorism but also spreading malicious propaganda based on mendacity, lies and misinformation. Pakistan’s Ambassador to the UN, Munir Akram as usual raked up the Jammu and Kashmir issue in the UN Security Council during the open debate on ‘Maintenance of International Peace and Security Through Preventive Diplomacy’. Earlier in October, he had tried to misinform on the issue of Jammu and Kashmir during the meeting of the General Assembly’s First Committee that deals with disarmament and international security issues. This has become a normal feature for the Pak envoys at the UN. They have also used fake photographs and videos to press their point of view, wasting time of the global body.

While they had been doing it since the partition, after 2019 decision of the Government of India to revoke Article 370, the anti-India criticism has become shriller and louder at various international forums. In September 2019, the then Pakistan’s envoy to the UN Maleeha Lodhi spewed venom against India. The Indian response pointed out that Pakistan envoy was making an attempt to spread baseless and deceitful narratives against India.

The story this time was not different. Munir Akram raised the J&K issue based on falsity and fraud to target India. Dr Kajal Bhat, who is the Counsellor and Legal Adviser at India’s Permanent Mission to the UN and is from Kashmir, in a chiding rebuttal stated three important dimensions of Pakistani sinister design. First, Pakistan misuses the global platform “to propagate false and malicious propaganda against” against India. Second, Pakistan’s such efforts are aimed at diverting the attention of the International Community from its terrorism related activities. She also pointed out that Pakistan & “holds the ignoble record of hosting the largest number of terrorists proscribed by the UN Security Counci l&”. Third, the minorities in Pakistan are living in miserable conditions.

She highlighted India’s approach to have normal neighbourly relations with all countries including Pakistan and its commitment to resolve all the issues in accordance with the Shimla Agreement and the Lahore declaration. She averred that “the entire Union Territories of Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh, were, are and will always be an integral and inalienable part of India. This includes the areas that are under the illegal occupation of Pakistan.” She rightly called upon Pakistan to immediately vacate all areas under its illegal occupation (PoK).

The problem with Pakistan is that it continues to depend on terrorism as an instrument of state to deal with India. Now it is using the same instrument to achieve strategic depth in Afghanistan. Through its this approach, Pakistan-Afghanistan region has become once again a hub of international terrorism. Pakistan is well-known for its policy of harbouring, aiding and actively supporting terrorists and is globally recognized as one openly supporting, training, financing and arming terrorists as a matter of State policy. It was no coincidence that Osama bin Laden stayed in Abbottabad for more than five years- place which was not far away from the Army training institute and its headquarters. It was not only him but several other Al Qaeda leaders were given safe shelter. More recently the Taliban were kept and supported to capture Kabul. The ISI’s nexus with Haqqani network is well known. When it was under the pressure of FATF, it arrested some terrorists but recently they have been released. Obviously, no attempt was made to provide evidence against the terrorists. Most of the terrorists whenever they are lodged in jails, are treated as the guests of the establishment.

In addition, Pakistani propaganda to change the perception of civil society also continues. The use of social media with fake profiles are deployed to incite communal tension through fake videos and photographs.

However, the two recent steps taken by Pakistan suggest likely change in its approach towards India.

First, the opening of Kartarpur Sahib corridor and second, Imran Khan’s inclination to allow wheat consignments for Afghanistan to go through the Pakistani territory. The motives of these overtures are not clear. Some experts see these as the result of Pakistan’s internal political and economic problems. They view that Pakistan wants to maintain peace at the Indo-Pak border to deal with internal issues. It appears they are geared to project a reasonable image of the country. The need for financial aid from US could also be an important factor. Besides, the opening of Kartarpur corridor was demanded by various Sikh factions. It may be mentioned that the Pakistan Army, which determines the Pak policy towards India, does not take assuasive measures unless they advance its larger strategic objectives.

Pragmatism demands that Pakistan’s overall strategy should be kept in view. The past experience shows that whenever Pakistan faces internal problem, it raises the level of Indo-Pak tension to divert the attention of its population. The current economic problems have increased tremendously. China is not willing to come to assist Pakistan fully. That’s why Pakistan is trying to get assistance from the US. The US has also adopted a soft approach towards Pakistan for its strategic reasons. It continues to consider Pakistan as an important player in the region to protect its strategic interests. At the Trioka Plus conference, Bajwa, while calling for coordinated efforts for the economic uplift of Afghan people and peaceful and prosperous Afghanistan in pursuit of regional stability, also held out a veiled threat that if the Taliban are not helped, then none is safe even situated at a distance. This was more to pressurise the US to provide assistance not only to Taliban but also to Pakistan which can control the Taliban. In fact, this was the Pak strategy even during the ‘Global War on Terror’ based on duplicity as was clearly stated by the former US President Trump.

Pakistan is fast moving towards the camps of well-known terrorist outfits. It has made truce with TLP and with the help of Sirajuddin Haqqani, it has entered into an agreement with TTP- an organisation that was responsible for the massacre of school children in 2014. The arrested cadres of these outfits have been released. There are also reports that the ISI has formed a group of smaller jihadi outfits known as the Islamic Invitation Alliance which is used for dealing with those Taliban sections which may not be with Haqqani faction or may not be seen as the pro-Pak elements. IS-K, which is responsible for recent violence in Afghanistan, is having close links with ISI. The Pak Army would use all elements to ensure that Kabul dispensation remains under its thumb.

In essence, Pakistan has emerged as a land of pure terrorism: it is now having a nexus with TLP and TTP besides Taliban, IS-K and Haqqani network. Its only strategy is to use terrorism to achieve its objective against India and ensure control over Kabul. Various terrorist outfits constitute its unofficial army. India has to be careful of its duplicitous efforts both in India and Afghanistan. India should also be clear that while the US may be having similar objective as that of India in the Indo-Pacific, its interests in Pakistan and also in Afghanistan differ from those of India. It is better to have coordination with Iran and Russia in Afghanistan as both are having interests like India to keep it free from terrorism and make the region stable and peaceful. China is totally depending on Pakistan so far Afghanistan is concerned and the Sino-Pak axis is coordinating for keeping India under pressure. In view of the forgoing, a long-term well-calibrated strategy designed to foil the Pak nefarious gameplan is needed. This includes exploitation of its vulnerabilities. India’s defensive approach alone cannot counter the Pak plans.

Linkedin


Disclaimer

Views expressed above are the author’s own.



END OF ARTICLE



.



Source link

%d bloggers like this: