Modi treading dangerous course

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India and Pakistan risked nuclear war

Though through the intervention of the international community and friendly countries, the possibility of an imminent war between India and Pakistan was averted, the tension remains at the same level. Some politicians in India are expecting yet another incident like Pulwama before the elections. Reportedly, Prime Minister Imran Khan addressing a gathering at Khar on March 15, indicated the possibility of yet another attack by India within the next 30 days.

If Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi shows the same madness as he did after the Pulwama attack by launching aggression against Pakistan, then the response to it may not remain confined only to retaliatory action. Armed clash between the two nuclear states could easily lead to nuclear war if there is any miscalculation on either side. Modi is therefore treading a very dangerous course. He and his government probably fail to understand that the course they have adopted could lead to mutual destruction.

The USA was the first country which produced a nuclear bomb and also used it with horrendous consequences. The scale of death and destruction caused by the device sent shudders through the nerves of the users and created a sense of remorse that also prompted them to lobby and vie for nuclear non-proliferation, though it still remains an elusive dream. German scientist J Robert Oppenheimer, who produced the bomb regretted about his efforts in these words “Now I have become death, the destroyer of worlds”

US President John F Kennedy, addressing the UN General Assembly on 15 September 1961, elaborating the dangers of nuclear warfare, said “Every inhabitant of this planet must contemplate the day when this planet may no longer be habitable. Every man, woman and child lives under a nuclear sword of Damocles, hanging by the slenderest of threads, capable of being cut at any moment by accident or miscalculation or by madness. The weapons of war must be abolished before they abolish us.” President Ronald Reagan, in his state of the Union address in 1984, deposed, “A nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought. The only value in our two nations possessing nuclear weapons is to make sure they will never be used. But then would it not be better to do away with them entirely?” The President of the rival nuclear power, the USSR, Nikita Khrushchev speaking about consequence of nuclear war said “ The living will envy the dead “

It was the realization of the horrors of nuclear war that led to a movement for non-proliferation of nuclear weapons at the global level being launched in the form of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.  And both the superpowers also signed a treaty between them to reduce the nuclear arsenal. They were engaged in the Cold War and even fought proxy wars in other lands, but they never ever attacked each other. The possession of matching nuclear capability acted as a deterrent. They went through many crises and situations which could have led to a miscalculation on the part of either, triggering the first ever nuclear war, with prospects of making the earth an uninhabitable place, but better sense prevailed and the tensions were defused through diplomacy.

Indian voters will have to think not twice but thrice whether they really want such a man at the helm of the affairs

Seen in the backdrop of the foregoing facts, the indiscretion committed by the Modi government to attack Pakistan territory constituted an act of unbelievable madness. It could have easily pushed the two countries into a nuclear war, had Pakistan not shown restraint, and the sangfroid to avert the prospects of mutual destruction by sensitizing the world community about the lurking dangers and reiterating her commitment to peace. It did so from a position of strength. The result was that the stand-off between the two nuclear states sent a wave of alarm throughout the world and countries like the USA, Russia, China, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, the UAE and all those who were concerned about the developing situation did play their part to de-escalate the situation. It was a laudable effort on their part.

However it will be an ephemeral respite unless the root-cause of the confrontation between the two countries is addressed. The current situation developed in the backdrop of Pulwama incident, in which a Kashmiri youth attacked a convoy of Indian security forces. The incident though condemnable was a stark reminder of the fact that madness begets madness. The killing spree in the Indian occupied Kashmir by the Indian security forces and their blatant violation of human rights represents madness of the first order. The occupiers could not expect to be garlanded as a reward for their bestiality. There will always be a danger of similar incidents in the future if the Modi government continues to use ruthless force to subdue the freedom movement in IHK and denies the right of self-determination to the Kashmiris in conformity with the UN resolutions. The freedom movement in Ksshmir is an indigenous movement and Pakistan only supports it at the political, diplomatic and moral level. Pakistan is a party to the Kashmir dispute and is very much entitled to extend that support to the people of Kashmir.

It has almost become visceral for the Indian governments, particularly the Modi government to blame Pakistan for such incidents without ever coming forth with any credible evidence. Pakistan has repeatedly offered cooperation for investigations to ferret out the truth but the Indians have invariably shied away from them and instead tried to use them for portraying Pakistan as a state sponsoring terrorism notwithstanding the fact that India itself was committing state terrorism in IHK and has also been sponsoring acts of terrorism within Pakistan, as corroborated by Indian spy Kalbhushan Jadhav in his confessional statements.

It is now a well established fact that the Modi government did what it did to extract political advantage in view of the ensuing general elections in India. Its antics have not only been exposed before the world, but also to the saner elements in India who are very much concerned about the risk that Modi is taking for narrow political ends. I think the Indian voters will have to think not twice but thrice whether they really want such a man at the helm of the affairs, who is impulsive to the extent of jeopardizing the very existence of the country by provoking war with another nuclear state, determined to deface the secular countenance of India and is deliberately trying to undermine communal harmony.

The international community and the UN also need to assert themselves for the resolution of disputes between Pakistan and India, and to use their influence to make India comply with UN resolutions. That is the ultimate solution and the only way to eliminate the prospects of war between the two nuclear states.