The Great Indian slide show continues

Pakistan and the Kashmiri separatists breach the understanding

If the bus service across Kashmir was intended as a confidence-building measure between the Indian and Pakistani governments, it has already failed. For how much confidence can India have in a Pakistan that had no qualms in brazenly violating the letter and spirit of the understanding that came about after the most protracted negotiations? Bharat Bhushan’s op-ed in the Calcutta Telegraph outlines how India has ended up strengthening the Pakistani position. Having gotten itself onto a slippery slope, it continues to slide

Pakistan has flown the Hurriyat leaders out of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir — a disputed territory — into Islamabad, without either stamping the passports or issuing them visas. India is unable to do anything as it had originally sanctioned visa-free travel to PoK to enable Kashmiris to take the special bus route between Muzaffarabad and Srinagar.

General Musharraf reminded the world that this visa-less and passport-less travel by the Kashmiri leaders to Pakistan (not PoK) was “the recognition of the disputed status of India-held Kashmir by both the countries”. Mark his words. The whole of the erstwhile princely state of Jammu and Kashmir is not disputed — POK is not disputed, according to the General and nor are Gilgit and Baltistan. Only that part of Kashmir that is in India is disputed.

This stinging slap must embarrass those in New Delhi who rushed with forcibly offering passports to the Hurriyat leaders. [The Calcutta Telegraph]

2 thoughts on “The Great Indian slide show continues”

  1. This has gone on long enough. India needs to pull up its socks and be firm with Pakistan on the Kashmir issue. Pak has done very little in terms of actual action. Musharraf only offers rhetoric and mind games.

    And India will further be at the mercy of Pakistan if this pipeline project thing comes to fruitition. Doesn’t the Indian government realise that they are dealing with a dictator run, politically unstable state?

    I can only hope that our government reads all these opinions and analysis and makes an informed decision on policies and projects involving Pakistan.

    Btw, first time I’ve come across this blog. I like your foreign affairs and economy posts. Keep up the good work.

  2. Nitin:

    Another embarassment for New Delhi, of course. But the General’s fabulation won’t stand–India, of course, doesn’t recognize J&K as disputed territory. Saying it won’t make that real, so I see no need to clap as the General does his ‘victory lap’.

    I suspect this amounts to a diplomatic Kargil: Tactical victory yielding a strategic defeat. Even the politicos in New Delhi will be less susceptible to the General’s charms now.


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