tit for tat

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 22 May 2018 11:02:57

THE manner in which the Border Security Force (BSF) hit back at Pakistani posts, demolishing bunkers, killing Pakistani soldiers, and making the Pakistan Rangers’ top-brass realise the ferocity India was capable of demonstrating, indicated something that should make every Indian proud. So ferocious was the Indian response to the unprovoked firing by Pakistan across the Line of Control (LoC) killing 2 soldiers and 4 civilians, that the Pakistan Rangers’ 

top-brass finally pleaded with the BSF top-brass to spare them. Such a response should actually become a routine with Indian forces so that Pakistan starts learning the right lessons from its misadventures. So angry should the Indian reaction be that the Pakistani authorities should become terribly apprehensive about needling India. For the past few years, Pakistani troops have habitually indulged in cross-border firing without any provocation from India. In such unprovoked firing and bombarding into the Indian territory, countless Indian civilians have been killed in addition to untold numbers of soldiers. A gentleman State that India is, the Indian authorities have often followed the principle of restraint in bilateral ties. They have tried their best to avoid any direct confrontation since they believe that such an approach would always push both the countries -- India and Pakistan -- closer towards a full-scale war.


Pakistan has been taking an undue advantage of India’s docile approach and has kept up needling of India all along for so many years. Despite appeals to good sense, Pakistan has refused to control its trigger-happiness. Time and again, news comes of ceasefire violation by Pakistan, resulting in the killings of innocent civilians, damage to property, and a fear-psychosis. So troublesome have such ceasefire violations been that the Indian authorities have found themselves ordering evacuation of localities along the border.It is against this background that the BSF’s no-nonsense response and the subsequent pleading by Pakistan Rangers to stop bombarding their positions, assumes a special significance. It is more than obvious that the BSF’s hitting back was precise and devilish, so much so that the Pakistanis could not design an appropriate response to the Indian initiative. For India, this development is special and indicates how Pakistan could be brought to its knees.


Of course, a similar response from Pakistan was expected when the Indian Armed Forces executed very finely planned ‘surgical strikes’ into Pakistani territory two years ago. So good was that initiative that the world felt stunned, and Pakistan numbed. The Indian authorities had expected Pakistan to learn a good lesson from that initiative. However, nothing of that sort happened and the Pakistanis were back to their dirty activities. For a while, they did remain rather sedate, but started needling India again.
The sum total of the overall experience with Pakistan, thus, is that India will have to be tough all the time, ready for a no-nonsense strike-back, willing to go more than a reasonable distance to protect its territory and its people who inhabit border areas. In other words, India will have to take an Israel-like stance all the time -- dashing into the Pakistani territory or inflicting a terrible damage on the Pakistanis if they tried any misadventure with us. And we state again, as we had earlier on a couple of occasions, that India’s retaliation should be almost real-time and not after some procrastination. When such a riposte` becomes routine, then Pakistan is likely to learn the right lesson. That will not be being trigger-happy; that will mean that India would not tolerate any meddling and needling. This is the only message the Indian Forces must pass back to Pakistan.