Source: The Hitavada      Date: 16 Jan 2019 10:32:23

UNION Minister of Home Affairs Mr. Rajnath Singh has put the reality in right words that Kashmir still continues to be a tough challenge for India because of the destabilising activities indulged in by Pakistan on a continuous basis. In fact, this has been a continuous concern of the Government for the past seven decades. The simple hope India harboured that Pakistan would live peacefully after its formation floundered on two counts -- internally Pakistan always remained in the throes of chaos; and externally, it continued to brew trouble in Kashmir as a part of its State policy obviously with a view to keep needling India all the time. In other words, Pakistan has continued itself to be in trouble, and continued to trouble India every now and then. Mr. Rajnath Singh has expressed all these elements in straight words.

A quick look at history shows us something very typical about Pakistan. Right at the dawn of Independence, it sent its forces, though garbed as tribesmen, to annex Kashmir, thinking that India would not even imagine that anything like that could happen. Though Pakistan was right to an extent, India recovered quickly from the first shock and rallied back, pushing the intruders out in a few days. No matter that quick recovery, Pakistan could get a slice from Indian territory that became Occupied Kashmir, and that small success emboldened Pakistan to keep needling India all along. Even when it lost East Pakistan in a quick war in 1971, Pakistan did not learn its lessons. That stage continues even today, with a steadfast refusal to learn the right lessons. Pakistan still believes, though very naively, that it can still claim another part of Kashmir or whole of it from India through a low-intensity proxy war.

Of course, that is being foolish, though Pakistani leadership does not realise it. Hence its needling in Kashmir even when historically it should have known that such overtures would not take it anywhere. Still, it has stuck to this policy, which now acts as a continuous trouble for India. While handling the Kahsmir situation, however, the Government, under different leaderships in the past seven decades,tried various tactics and strategies but could not solve the problem because of the non-stop trouble exported by Pakistan into Kashmir all along.

A few days ago, Prime Minister Mr. Narendra Modi had said in reply to a question in a media interview that ‘just one war’ would not teach Pakistan any lesson. The Prim e Minister, thereby, was referring to a reality that Pakistan is a rogue and cantankerous State that will never learn the right lessons and will never allow a culture of accommodation to dominate bilateral relations with India. Unfortunately, we cannot avoid observing that accommodation is not in Pakistan’s blood, goaded and guided as it is by a blind and foolhardy ambition of annexing Kashmir some day.

Of course, that is only a pipe dream that will never come true. Over time, India also has learned many lessons in Kashmir, and will never allow Kashmir to dominate the discourse totally. No matter that, the challenge of handling Kashmir has continued to dog the Indian thinking all these years. Frankly, there appears no hope of any redemption from this situation. Though there was not even a hint of despair in Mr. Rajnath Singh’s statement, there is certain stark realism that we cannot miss.

This realism now guides the Indian thought and action on Kashmir. Over the past couple of years, despite the continued trouble, the Government has been able to tackle the Kashmir challenge in quite a mature manner. These efforts have yielded good results, no doubt. Yet, we agree with Mr. Rajnath Singh that the Kashmir challenge is tough only because of Pakistan’s machinations to destabilise Indian administration.