Air Marshal (Retd.) B.K. Pandey’s solution to Kashmir problem is too simplistic. Certainly, India and Pakistan can unite. The subcontinent should never have been partitioned anyway. And why only India and Pakistan? Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Myanmar can join the union too. Which was my dream for decades. Not any more. India should not form a union with any country. Least of all with Pakistan. Pakistan, a failed state, will be a millstone round India’s neck, setting the country back to what it was in the 1980s. Do we want that?
As for Kashmir problem, it is there to stay. Every time we come close to a solution some ‘non-state actor’ puts in a spanner in the works and we go back to square one. Pakistan came into being on the basis of religion. The events of 1971 (when Pakistan became ‘bakistan’) proved how wrong the logic was. Even today Balochistan, Pakhtunwa and Sindh (all muslims) are on the verge of breaking away. The real Pakistan exists only in its Punjab province which dominates everything in Pakistan.
Pandey cites the example of East and West Germany reuniting. Though technically independent, both sides were occupied territories since WW II. They reunited because citizens from both sides wanted to. Do we see any such desire from the citizens of India and Pakistan? Pakistan was carved out on the basis of religion and survives on the basis of its hatred for India. Will the Pakistani muslims shed their inhibitions, forget the events of past seventy years and live with their Indian brethren in peace and cooperation? I doubt it.Will their generals accept such a union? Certainly not.
The civilian government in Pakistan has always been held hostage by the army, the real rulers of Pakistan. The generals have only one agenda. The agenda being to somehow destabilize and dismember our country. They have never won an overt war with India. Changing their tactics, they are waging a covert war through terrorists (so called non-state actors) in an effort to deliver us a death of a thousand cuts. They have been bleeding us for the last thirty years and we did not retaliate, at least not strongly enough. At last, with an overt strike, delivered with precision, India has delivered a very strong message to Pakistan. We can and will hit back and destroy what threatens us. Their defense minister Khwaja Mohammad Asif threatens to nuke and eliminate India. No doubt India will be badly mauled if a nuclear war is forced upon us. But does he realize that in the bargain Pakistan will cease to exist. Nuclear war is a big NO NO. Nobody wants war, even with convention weapons.
Finally, a word to our media, particularly electronic media. Gentlemen, please go easy on rhetoric and war cries. Do not promote mob hysteria. Stick to your job and report the news, truthfully and honestly. Do not whip up public frenzy which will only harm our cause. Our leaders also should use restraint and not make irresponsible and uncalled for statements.