Pakistan has reacted on the expected lines to the constitutional decisions in India on Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh. Scratching old wounds is not going to help either country. Pakistan has to move quickly to a democratic idiom rather than military rhetoric.
The Pakistani misadventure in J&K in 1947 ruined it for more than 72 years and unless it changes fast it shall continue to suffer its effects for several decades more.
The games the British authorities were playing with India and Pakistan was largely missed by the leadership on both sides- the loss of an empire like India was more than painful for them.
They indulged in games that many in both the countries fail to understand even today. The common people in both the countries have paid a very heavy price and continue to do so even now.
The Pakistani military generals have entwined themselves in the trap thrown around them by the British authorities and they will find it difficult to come out of it safely. They have been tricked into anti-India activities and armed conflicts for 72 years since 24th October 1947. The net gainers of this futile and grossly wasteful exercise are the manufacturers and merchants of weapons and ammunitions. Neither Pakistan makes them, nor India. Both have been importing them by rationing food and other essential consumption for decades. The two countries export little weapons and ammunition. Was it for this that the struggle for independence was mounted, asking the British to Quit India? Was the country partitioned for this purpose, creating worst riots in human history killing millions?
And yet, Pakistan does not seem to have realized the necessity to move out of the war hysteria as its generals keep creating chaos and snatch every opportunity to impose military rule in Pakistan ending with a war with India. Now that it has nuclear weapons, it thinks it can start a nuclear war against India. Nothing can be more childish than this.
The world of the 20th Century was different from the world of the present 21st Century. Wars no wise nation fights. Peace has been embraced by all civilized nations. Only Pakistan keeps talking war. The time of the empires is gone and so have the emperors. Dictators have ruined their countries wherever they captured power. Ill-informed military generals have only promoted terrorism.
The world is not afflicted with ideology any more. Rulership has been replaced with service which is the guiding principle of democracy.
Artificial intelligence is going to change the way armies are organized, drastically reducing number of soldiers, replacing them with robots. Jobs are going to sharply reduce in the coming years.
Countries that have prepared themselves to face the challenges of the 21st Century will be in an advantageous position compared to military ruled nations.
The common man can no more the asked to make all the sacrifices while the military brass, politicians, bureaucrats and contractors swindle all the assets of the country.
India has no territorial designs on any country except what is its rightfully. India is a peace-loving country. Don’t make the mistake of taking it as a sign of weakness. This is India’s strength.
The world loves peace. What is there which cannot be solved in an atmosphere of peace and trust?
Pakistan ought to establish democracy and rule of law. The military can’t be allowed to control administration of justice. It cannot be permitted to hang an elected prime minister. A democratic Pakistan stands better chances of prosperity and survival.
Pakistani political parties should ensure that developments in India are not hyped to continue hate campaigns against India with renewed vigour to seek military solutions to purely political issues.
Enough to say that the old Princely Rulers of India were befooled into toying with the idea of sovereignty and status of a nation. They dithered in decision making hoping that with the help of the British government, they would get what they wanted and see their dreams fructify. The King of J&K was no exception- he was one among many others.
While India has abolished privy purses and privileges accorded to the erstwhile rulers, Pakistan has created a whole new breed of such rulers in the form of military rulers, who subscribe to no values and hang the elected prime minister or exile him (exile in 21st Century?) and enter the office of the president without getting elected. They possess assets many times more than the Nawab of Bahawalpur. They have assets in more than one foreign country. That is the reason they don’t promote democracy; that is the reason they don’t encourage political parties; that is the reason they don’t allow development of Pakistan. So long as they have the privilege of enjoying a life of luxury, they don’t care weather the poor people in Pakistan get to eat a roti or naan. But the political parties have an opportunity now. If they miss out now, they will not get it for decades. It is for the political establishment in Pakistan to think whether they want to get out of the clutches of weapon merchants or hypothecate the country to them.
Remember how India came under the British rule: small princes with no more than a few lakhs of annual revenue begged of the British to provide them a small contingent of 10 uniformed soldiers to guard them in their incessant wars(?) with the enemy. The British demanded in return 10 years’ revenue, which the princes gladly agreed. But they could never service the debt they owed to the British, who eventually took over their country (?). That is how the British power gradually but smartly spread all over India.
Developing countries are repeating this model in buying arms from manufacturing countries and taking loans on bilateral or multilateral basis. Even the IMF, World Bank and other similar institutions cannot grant financial assistance to such compromised economies. Besides, aid and assistance always come with strings attached. Strings ultimately weave the net that becomes impossible to cut through.
Pakistan must pay greater attention to peace and cooperation with India. It should remember that it is not the world’s largest military nor shall ever be so. When it declared itself as an Islamic country, it had hoped to get unlimited financial aid from the Muslim countries in the name of furthering Islam. The modern world sees through such veneers rather easily. And they don’t need Pakistani army to protect them, if Pakistan entertained any such notion.
Instead Pakistan needs to make peace with India and cooperate for the sake of growth and development of Pakistan as a modern peace-loving nation. Instead of throwing away all its resources in pursuing a destructive military policy, Pakistan needs to remember that India and Pakistan share a common past, a valuable cultural legacy and tradition of fraternity. Together, India and Pakistan own the legacy of the oldest universities of the world. Instead of spending on military hardware, should the two countries not spend on archaeological studies together to find out what exactly happened to the Sindhu Civilisation or the Mohan-jo-Daro? Was it Mohan-ji-do Dero or the Temple of Lord Krishna? The value of all the soft assets of the two countries is enough to eradicate poverty from both. What is Pakistan waiting for? This is the right time.
Pakistan should stop completely all terror activities against India and demonstrate convincingly that it no more trains, helps and maintains terrorists of any denomination.
If it follows the path of peace, the world can be sure to see a different Pakistan- a happy and prosperous nation contributing to world peace rather than providing trained terrorists to attack civilian targets the world over.