Hitting the B-spot

Balochistan is burning. India must ramp up international pressure on Musharraf

Forget realpolitik (for a moment). If the human rights tragedy in Balochistan escaped international attention so far, it is largely because it was ignored by India and the United States. It appears that the policy makers in New Delhi finally realised the absurdity of having to listen to Pakistani proposals on self-governance for Kashmir, even as Musharraf’s army uses heavy artillery, tanks, helicopter gunships and jet fighters to silence calls for the same by its Baloch people.

‘‘The government of India has been watching with concern the spiralling violence in Balochistan and heavy military action, including use of helicopter gunships and jet fighters by the government of Pakistan to quell it,’’ MEA spokesperson said responding to a question. ‘‘We hope the government of Pakistan will exercise restraint and take recourse to peaceful discussions to address the grievances of the people of Balochistan.’’ [IE]

The Pakistani foreign office rejected India’s comment, using that amazing word the use of which it has elevated to a fine art: baseless. As usual this is wrong. Even if it is argued that India has no business interfering in Pakistan’s internal matters, surely that business of the gas pipeline gives India sufficient cause to be alarmed.

8 thoughts on “Hitting the B-spot”

  1. I dont think much will come out of this “concern” for Baloch people. As long as Uncle Sam looks the other way, Pakis will continue to unleash hell there.
    Earlier too we expressed similar concern when Pakis did the
    samething in POK and nothing came out of it.

  2. Watch out for either border shelling across POK by Pak Rangers (now limited in their ability thanks to quake) or terror attacks in India by jihadist pigs. That’s how the wily Generalissimo will divert attention from his own crumbling banana republic.

  3. US would prefer to stay out of it as it suits their interests. They won’t mind giving one more thing to worry about to Iran, apart from having the energy pipelines from central asia passing through a friendly and\or weak nation.
    India is finally putting some pressure, and coming out of the ‘peace-process’ quietness. I hope it has realised, or atleast managed to show the world that there can not be any credible peace process when the survival of the establishment in Pakistan itself depends on scuttling it. It would also do no harm in negotiations for the gas pipeline going on between Iran and India.

  4. Even though it seems late, I am delighted with India’s response to the injustices in Pakistan. The grandeur of this enterprise should not be minimized by a narrow focus on Pakistan, but on injustices in light of the inalienable rights of man, all mankind, irrespective of the country, its religion, and its relationship to India. To restrict the concerns to just Pakistan is to make your conscience Paki-centric, cheap, self-serving, and too narrow to be viewed as unbiased. Concern for the rights of the citizens should be broadened to include precious souls in Myanmar, Indonesia, Africa, Asia, etc. Such an approach would dispel the notion that India is meddling in Pakistan’s internal affairs, but would be welcome and taken quite seriously by the international community. The rights of man is everyone’s affair, whether Balochis or Sudanese Christian, and in keeping with India’s image of an emerging economic giant, it would augur well for India to also emerge as a bastion of human rights and an advocate of the down trodden. Your successes, in the incessant battles for secularism and against casteism to name a few, though not resounding, have well endowed India with the first-hand experience to not only speak out confidently against such injustices, but to also map out a strategy for greater involvement in spreading democracy in the world.

    Economic forecasters are predicting that within the next five to ten years at least 300 million more Indians would be joining the middle class, an economic miracle, if you ask me, that would not have happened had your democratic institutions not created that environment (freedom and justice) for such upward mobility and prosperity. And, although I know that all is not perfect, it presents Indians the fortuitous opportunity to get involved in the respected international organizations that seek for justice and freedom for all the oppressed, including the Balochis. You would be following the other great economies in Western Europe and America which, during the 50s, had the same experience of expanding economies concurrent with greater rights and freedoms for their citizens, and at the same time greater sensitivity for the rights of human beings everywhere in the world..

    So, the protection of human rights is the most important reason for exposing and speaking out against Pakistani tyranny and cruelty against the people of Balochistan, and as civilized human beings who have successfully addressed your own disparities, you would be expected to exercise this right. Pakistan’s wave of terror against its own citizens should come as no surprise to any, and neither the unmitigated vitriol against anyone who exposes it. It is a military dictatorship, and such is the self-serving character of all military dictatorships – all decisions are made to support of its own perpetuity in power, and to embellish its character. The fault line, however, is where this power collides with an intrinsic human right, the natural and legitimate desire to have a share in the national economic pie, particularly since the mineral resource portion of that pie is within boundaries of Balochistan. Which Balochi does not know the benefits that such windfall profits would bring to his state and its citizens? Which one does not dream of progress – clean drinking water, a safe and secure supply of food, a good home, health care, and a good education for their children? Military dictatorships are not given to the type of give and take, open discussions, consensus, and joint policy development required for the resolution of such impasses. But, what are the chances that a combination of graft, intimidation, F-16s, helicopter gunships, etc. will drive these God-given desires right out of the hearts and psyches of the Baloch people? The lines are inflexible, and the impending conflict will make the troubles in Kashmir look like a Sunday picnic..

    Although it would seem as only an incidental benefit to the world, faithful and factual exposes of Pakistani tyranny and injustice against its own people, within the broader context of justice and freedom for all, will result in a tremendous benefit to India. It could result in the revival and strengthening of those institutions that once protected the rights of citizens, but now silenced and subverted by the military. Put simply, it would have a debilitating effect on the military junta. Its loss of credibility domestically and internationally would be slow at first, but it will accumulate in lowered morale, loss of favors in the international community, pressure for the restoration of democracy, with the most telling impact upon the Kashmiri people who would then have a better view of the true nature of the beast. There is light at the end of the tunnel.

    In the meantime, two irreconcilable desires are due for a collision. It could result in the fragmentation of Pakistan, but the General who holds all the cards, thinks that the problem is India.

  5. Oh how these people must miss Indira Gandhi who broke Jinnah’s Paksitan and threw it into the Bay of Bengal . Although these mughal slaves of jinnah’s pakistan from Bengal are some the the most virulent jihadists today , we should continue to fund and promote Indira Gandhi’s policy and break up Baloch, Gilgit and Tajik and into Iran

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