Kashmiri terrorism was not home-grown

Pakistan’s culpability comes out of its own closet

The beans they are a-spilling. After Yasin Malik’s revelations comes this admission from Amanullah Khan, chief of the Jammu & Kashmir Liberation Front.

Mr Khan says the ISI first made contact with the JKLF in early 1987, through the organisation’s senior leader Farooq Haider.

He says Mr Haider made a deal with the ISI whereby the JKLF was to bring young Kashmiris willing to fight Indian rule to Pakistan-administered Kashmir. They would then be given military training and arms by the ISI, he says. The objective was to start an insurgency in Indian-administered Kashmir.

Mr Khan says he was not a part of the deal at the time it was made, but went ahead with it because the JKLF was told that “General Zia ul-Haq’s ideology was similar to that of the JKLF.”

Another reason for accepting the offer was that two previous attempts by the JKLF at starting an insurgency had failed for want of “external support”, Mr Khan adds. [‘BBC’]

While Pakistan continues to deny that it had anything to do with sponsoring terrorism in Kashmir, given its intentions, its claims were neither surprising nor believable. But over the years, it has become fashionable among certain quarters in India to believe that while Pakistan is responsible for fanning the flames of the insurgency, the roots of terror were home grown. Amanuallah Khan’s revelations should put that myth to rest. Pakistan had begun training the JKLF well over three years before terrorism became a widespread problem in the Kashmir valley.

Flush with money, infrastructure, arms and experience from the anti-Soviet jihad in Afghanistan, Pakistan’s president, Gen Zia-ul-Haq and his intelligence chief, Gen Akhtar Abdul Rahman created the Kashmiri terrorist. There were disgruntled and disaffected young men everywhere in India during the 1980s, not all of them became terrorists. Rigged elections were not unique to Jammu & Kashmir, but not every state with rigged elections fell victim to terrorism. If there is one thing common to Jammu & Kashmir, Punjab and Assam, the three Indian states where terrorism did claim thousands of lives, it is Pakistan’s involvement.

3 thoughts on “Kashmiri terrorism was not home-grown”

  1. 1987 was probably not the first time that someone (either Pak or JKLF) had tried to fan an insurgency in Kashmir. They failed in their previous attempts – Amanullah Khan (as quoted in this post) and the Paki Army in 1965. Going by that I am sure both parties were surprised by their serendipity when the insurgency in 1989 reached such epic proportions. Somebody’s serendipity is someone else’s nightmare though.

  2. Nitin – read this

    Sheikh Rashid has now made his visa “India’s test”?!

    ” In Islamabad, Rashid told a private TV network today that “The ball is in India’s court now. I will be notified on June 27 about the status of my visit. “It has now become a test case for the peace process. It is a test for India. We will see whether India will pass or fail,” he told Geo TV.”

    My god – this guy is amazingly shameless!

  3. Manu,

    I think it is a test for India too. It is a test of how much the Indian government allow itself to be led into compromising on the constitution it is sworn to uphold.

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