The Kashmir Game: It’s India’s Turn

Disclaimer: The article refers to the Indian Army, BSF, CRPF and J&K Police as the ‘Indian Security Forces’. I respect the role, responsibility and jurisdiction of each organization in protecting the territorial integrity of India.

There has been no peace with Pakistan until now. There will be no peace in the foreseeable future. There will be only strategies and counter strategies. If India retaliates aggressively against cross border violations and cancels talks, Pakistan will cultivate its proxies – Terrorists and Stone Pelters AKA Over Ground Workers (OGW) – to twist India’s arm. Now it’s India’s Turn to counter Pakistan.

Recently, Goa CM and former Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar was quoted by the media as saying, “It is not easy to resolve the Kashmir issue. There is a need for a long-term policy to resolve the Kashmir issue.”

Three policies of the BJP government have resulted in the stone pelting farce in the Kashmir Valley

  • Kashmir is a bilateral issue between Pakistan and India. No third party, especially Hurriyat Conference, can participate in the same.
  • Talks and Terrorism cannot go together. Pakistan must stop cross border violations and terrorism before any talks can take place. Any talks till then will be only on Terrorism.  
  • The Indian Security Forces will be given a free hand to deal with Cross Border violations by the Pakistan Army.

Both Pakistan and Hurriyat have retaliated by funding stone pelting mobs for the following reasons:

  • Pressure India to talk to Pakistan
  • Pressure India to recognize Hurriyat as a legitimate party to the Kashmir issue
  • Pakistan cannot take on India one-on-one in a conference room or in a battlefield

It was great to see India take a stand and cancel talks with Pakistan over the participation of the Hurriyat. It was also music to our ears when the Indian Security Forces retaliated like never before against Pakistan Army’s cross border violations. And the icing on the cake or perhaps the whole cake, two words – SURGICAL STRIKES.

But more recently, the Indian Security Forces has been seen only carrying out encounters or tackling OGW of the Terrorists.

I propose the single addendum to the above policies to retaliate against Pakistan and the Hurriyat:

  • The Indian Security Forces will force the Pakistan army to engage directly with it

The Indian Security Forces must retaliate against Pakistan at the slightest provocation. The LOC should heat up if India’s territorial integrity is being questioned.

By forcing the Pakistan army to engage directly with the Indian Security Forces, four objectives are achieved:

  1. Pakistan will also suffer the consequences: Till now, terrorists and OGW have suffered the consequences. Pakistan Army’s brilliant ‘jihad’ strategy avoids a confrontation with the powerful Indian Security Forces. ‘Jihad’ is also low cost as it comprises anyone with a gun or a stone. ‘Jihad’ also allows Pakistan to enter into territories of other countries to wage war. But what if, for example:
  • The Indian Security Forces blew up 5 Pakistan army posts across the border in retaliation for the video showing OGW heckling, kicking and slapping our security forces.
  • The Indian Security Forces blew up 15 Pakistan army posts in retaliation for the OGW disrupting the Kashmir by polls.
  • The Indian Security Forces blew up x Pakistan army posts in retaliation for y
  • Other provocations include ‘misguided youth’ holding Pakistan and ISIS flags, terrorists threatening locals and policemen, etc

2. Establish a connection between Pakistan, Hurriyat, Terrorists and OGW: For example:

  • During an encounter, the Indian Security Forces should always attack on two fronts: Encounter site and LOC. The LOC will be lit up until the encounter is completed or the terrorists surrender.
  • When facing a stone pelting mob, the Indian Security Forces will use restraint. It will also  fire at Pakistan army posts at the LOC. Similarly, the LOC will be lit up until the stone pelting mob disperses or surrenders.
  • This dual attack will establish India’s position that Pakistan is fomenting terror in the region and creating unrest in the valley.

3. Indian Security Forces will have a smaller Bull’s Eye: The Indian Security Forces is not only a target of Pakistan. The Aman Ki Asha gang in both countries which include Politicians, Media and JNU types also attack or try to shackle our Jawans. Pakistan is using OGW to provoke the Indian Security Forces to retaliate. A few blinded or dead OGW will bear fruit for Pakistan at International forums or for our Aman Ki Asha gang here in Indian Media studios. But if the Indian Security Forces focus more on the LOC and less on terrorists and OGW during encounters or stone pelting dramas, the enemy’s plan will fall apart.

4. The World will be forced to sit up and listen to India: The World must also answer for the dangerous game it is playing by arming a rogue country like Pakistan or supporting her in International forums. Until now, India has retrained herself to avoid any escalation between the two ‘nuclear armed rivals.’ A rival should be a worthy opponent which Pakistan is not. But if India starts to heat up the LOC, engaging the Pakistan army at every little provocation, the World will take notice. India can then force the World to sit next to India instead of ‘mediate’ between Pakistan and India.

Pakistan will remind India that it is not weak and will retaliate against India’s aggression. Peaceniks in both countries will highlight the heavy human cost to military conflict and that only dialogue will bring peace between the two countries. Both Pakistan and Peaceniks will bring in the ‘nuclear’ angle. We saw the nuclear destruction Pakistan caused after the surgical strikes.

Human cost is inevitable until India can build International consensus that Pakistan is the Terror Factory of the World and needs to be shackled. India alone declaring Pakistan a Terror State will have little consequence because it does not affect the proxies from pelting stones or killing our Jawans . It is an option but will not not necessarily lead to other countries declaring the same. Remember – Kashmir is a Bilateral issue.

A Final Word – Various ‘Rules’, Bilateral Agreements or International Laws will have to be reviewed before considering the above. Aman Ki Asha gang will surely remind India to set higher moral standards. But I am certain that our enemies are bound by no such restrictions. It is time to unshackle the beast so that the World understands India’s position that Pakistan is the Terror Factory of the World and that only India is pulverizing the real threat to World peace and stability. And more importantly – It’s India’s Turn to give it back. 

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