Published On: Thu, Aug 25th, 2016

Modi’s comments on Kashmir and Baluchistan: time to act

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modi-kashmirIndian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s 15th August address to the nation was not the usual Independence Day greetings and wishes. It carried a clear message to Pakistan and signalled India’s intentions loud and clear. Modi openly made references to Kashmir and Baluchistan, speaking of messages that he somehow received from Kashmir and Baluchistan. This is a clear indication that India is willing to play dirty, and Pakistan should take serious note of this.
Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s government has always spoken about trying to build good relations with India, and rightly so. But Modi’s latest comments have put up a barrier between Pakistan and India, and talks in this environment seem very difficult. Pakistan is a nuclear state and should always exercise great responsibility, but it also needs to toughen up in its stance with India. There are going to be testing times ahead and for that Nawaz Sharif and his government must show back bone and use tough language with Modi and Co.
Modi’s reference to Baluchistan was totally unacceptable, and the comparisons that he was trying to draw with Kashmir were absurd. Baluchistan is not a disputed territory; any comparison with Kashmir is equivalent to comparing apples and oranges. And India must know it too. But Modi Sarkar is hell-bent on riling up Pakistan, and is also openly challenging Pakistan, even mocking its rival. It is no hidden secret that there is Indian (RAW) involvement within Baluchistan. And Modi’s reference to Baluchistan on 15th August is a stark reminder for Pakistan that it needs to be on its toes and very alert.
Now it is time for Pakistan to drive home its agendas. Modi’s comments cannot be dismissed and the government cannot allow Baluchistan to become a pawn in the hands of India. Pakistan must compile all concrete evidence of Indian involvement in Baluchistan and make noise at an International level. Courting foreign friends has never really been Pakistan’ strong point and it must act now because there is no other option. Pakistan cannot afford to be lethargic on the matter, which is a matter of national security and sovereignty. Pakistan must also argue Indian occupied Kashmir’s case simultaneously, and not sideline the Kashmir cause.
Severe Human Rights violations are taking place and hellish life under curfew continues. Pakistan must expose India on the International arena, and must keep pushing for the UN (United Nations) route which is the only solution. The problem with Pakistan at present is that it makes progress and loses steam midway, which never brings results. It must keep pushing and pressing for the Kashmir cause on the International stage. Pakistan has a moral duty and it cannot shy away from that.
Baluchistan is a part of Pakistan and that cannot be disputed. Pakistan cannot allow external forces to create mischief in its own backyard. But Pakistan cannot afford to allow the Kashmir cause to be placed on the backburner either. These are going to be difficult times for Pakistan and the Muslim League (N) leadership will have its work cut out. But it has a responsibility to protect Baluchistan and a duty to support the Kashmir cause. Neither can be ignored and nor should it be the case.

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