Should we give aid to Pakistan?- A response to Quint’s article
Today I read an article in Quint. The article was written by none other than Sudheendra Kulkarni. He used to serve as an advisor to Atal Bihari Vajpayee in matters related to Pakistan. After reading the article, one can figure out why India and Pakistan were involved in direct (Kargil) or indirect (LOC face off after 2001 Parliament attack) wars through most of Mr. Vajpayee’s tenure.
He writes, that India, particularly Modi, should help Pakistan by giving it aid, “If’ they are ready to take it. Modi should go out of his way to give them aid that too without any strings attached”. I think what he really meant was, we should pay for the dead bodies of our own soldiers and civilians. He suggests that Modi should not just do lip service but walk the talk by literally shoving money to the throat of Pakistan. He also suggests the ways to do it. To balance it out, he adds a few benefits that are well known to any person with average intelligence of geography and economics. The biggest problem with his arguments has been pointed by himself when he says, “The said neighbour may not have the best of relations with you. But if you rush to them with a sincere and no-strings-attached offer of assistance, who knows, your neighbour might realise the virtue and long-term benefits of good-neighbourliness.”
Who knows, your neighbour might realise the virtue of good-neighbourliness. How many times do we Indians need to prove that we have been good neighbours? We have upheld Indus water treaty despite many wars been forced on us. We have returned the soldiers captured in wars without anything in exchange. We have taken the first step towards peace umpteen number of times despite the constant terrorist attacks on our soil. We have even allowed their artists, actors, singers, ‘intellectuals’, etc. to earn their bread in our country despite their nation (and army) doing everything in its power to destabilize India. When are we going to realize that Pakistan is never going to reciprocate any good will gesture? When will we understand that Pakistan sees our well meaning gestures only as our weakness? When will we stop this relentless, undying need of ours to appease Pakistan?
We need to realize that Pakistan is an aberration forced on this ancient land and civilization by the greed and shrewdness of then colonial powers. They have moved on but we are still paying the price of that mistake. The dark clouds of violence have made this Indian subcontinent their permanent home since that ill-fated day of 14th August. And not just in terms of violence, but even our social and political climate has been made vicious because of that single biggest blunder in the history of mankind. Our politics has evolved to appease Muslim community (of course just the symbolism and tokenism) to such an extent that calling oneself Hindu is looked down upon. This logic I would never be able to understand that those who partitioned the country are hailed but the entire fallout of that action has been on Hindus so much so that they have to constantly prove that they are secular either by denouncing their own religion or by being shameful of their Hindu identity. How were the Hindus responsible for the partition? And how come the political and social consequences have completely fallen on them? This bewilders me beyond imagination.
Indians, Sudheendra Kulkarni kind of Indians, need to realize the only way to have peace is to correct the aberration made decades ago. How do we correct that? Well, Bangladesh independence has proved that nations cannot and should not be built solely on the basis of religion. It is the civilization and culture that binds people together, not the religion. So the only way to bring peace to this troubled land is to redraw the boundaries based on culture and civilization. Pakistan is not a nation but a piece of land created to serve the interests of some. Earlier, it was western powers, now it is the Pakistan army and its corrupt politicians. The only way out is to let Pakistan crumble within to let the ancient cultures come back. Sindhi, Punjabi, Balochi, Tribals – let these cultures curve out their own separate land and end this abonimation finally end. This is the only way to bring ever lasting peace to the land of oldest civilization. So forget about giving aid to Pakistan, we should stop all our trade and economic activities with them to expedite the process of disintegration.
I am sure people like Sudheendra Kulkarni would cringe at the very mention of this idea though the logic behind their behavior eludes me. The only reason that I can think is that it aids their politics and let them stay relevant. If there is no Pakistan, the entire politics would change and this would make them irrelevant. This is what drives them to promote talks with Pakistan, forces them to give suggestions like this (giving aid to Pakistan) and take Pakistan’s side against their own nation. Or is it the money? Are some of them the beneficiaries of the corrupt ecosystem of army, politicians and intellectuals that exist in Pakistan? Well, whatever be the reason, I am not holding my breath for them to change.