Poshan
Letters | Aug 09, 1999
  • Lahore to Kargil: A Mission Inverted
    Aug 09, 1999

    Kargil has shown that Pakistan is capable of barking up any tree (except India) to get itself heard (Kargil, Post Mortem, July 26)! And while it may have lost this round and lost credibility as a responsible nuclear nation, it will use all means—fair and foul—to bring India to the negotiating table. India cannot take its threats of “many more Kargils” or “nuclear first use” lightly. Nor can it ignore its possible sale of N-technology to countries like Saudi Arabia. Instead it needs to resort to “proactive” diplomacy and “effective” media management to keep the world community on its side which had earlier always clubbed India and Pakistan together.

    Gaurang Jalan, Calcutta

    Again, terrorists have murdered 19 Hindus in Kashmir in the name of Islam. As a Muslim, I feel truly ashamed.

    Such incidents have been happening in Kashmir for the last 15 years. Pakistan-backed terrorists have largely succeeded in ethnically cleansing the Kashmir valley of most of the Hindus. Most of these terrorists are either Pakistanis or Afghans; Kashmiris do not figure in the list.

    Nafis Ahmed, Hyderabad

    It’s not because ‘we behaved responsibly and exercised restraint’ that the US has been pro-India, but because the CIA has identified Islamic fundamentalism and China as two of the biggest threats. For many years, it tried unsuccessfully to get a foothold via Pakistan in Afghanistan which meets its geostrategic interests. By its present moves, it has taken a calculated gamble. If India responds favourably, it may get bases from the Indian government in Kashmir. If it doesn’t, the US has gained a toehold in the Kashmir affair and can use it to back the Kashmiri call for independence and secure its bases directly from them.

    Sunil Kaul, London

    Though Pakistan lost more at Kargil, they have consolation in the fact that they made a mockery of our intelligence agencies. The question now is, where else do we have such voids that need to be filled?

    Abraham Jacob, Australia

    Now that the Kargil crisis is behind us, India should go all out to hammer a diplomatic solution to this chronic problem. Since Pakistan is in the habit of saying one thing and doing another, I think we should stop insisting on a bilateral solution and overcome the paranoia that the internationalisation of the Kashmir issue would go against India.

    Sudeep Bhagat, Delhi

    The Sharifs and Vajpayees will come and go out of power, but the martyrs of Kargil are gone forever. Riding on the Kargil wave, these politicians may even win elections, but once in office, they’ll have little time to shed tears for the dead soldiers’ families, let alone devise healthy compensation packages or ex-gratia payments. No one will remember these soldiers, whose names will exist as faded pointers to some road named after them.

    Nehal Arshad, Kanpur

    This war is eventually going to cost India some Rs 12,000 crore. Even if our army managed to kill 600 Pakistani intruders, each one of them have cost us Rs 20 crore. Had we spent this money on our intelligence and satellite surveillance, India wouldn’t have had to face this situation at all.

    Vidit Paliwal, Dehradun

    It’s sad that while our jawans demonstrate character in their public and private lives, our politicians fail to emulate them. Maybe we should have sent them to Kargil. Sonia could’ve handled food and rations, Laloo could have provided much-needed entertainment, Thackeray could have hurled choice abuses at Pakistanis across the LoC while the daunting Jaya could simply have rolled down Tiger Hills and caused an avalanche to bury Pakistani soldiers.

    Major R.K. Sabharwal, New Delhi



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