ISSN 2330-717X

The Security Improbability In South Asia – OpEd

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Collective growth is a phenomenon that the world is nowadays adopting in order to flourish not as a country solely but as an entire region. But there are some states that are unable to understand this philosophy of mutual growth, instead, they always try to craft hurdles against their neighbors in an attempt to take a solo flight towards prosperity which is anyway not an ideal scenario.

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India is among one of those countries that constantly infuriate its neighbors, therefore, undermining the security and development of the entire region. India possesses antipathies not just against Pakistan or China but it has border disputes with Nepal, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka as well. With its belligerent attitude, India is pushing regional countries to adopt a security doctrine by neglecting the wellbeing of the public.

Indo-Pak hostilities are momentous over the Kashmir issue which has been an apple of discord between both neighbors since their inception in 1947. Both nuclear neighbors fought three major wars over Kashmir but still, the issue remains an unresolved agenda of the partition and an active nuclear risk between India and Pakistan. Over the years India’s prepollent yearnings have put the entire region on the threshold of a nuclear calamity.

Interventionist India has also been involved in destabilizing Pakistan by waging terrorism through its proxies highly funded by its Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) with an intent to fuel insurgencies in the northern and eastern parts of the country. Traces found also suggest that separatist movements in Balochistan are also heavily financed and backed by Indian intelligence agencies.

The arrest of Kulbhushan Jadhav, a serving Indian naval officer working in the guise of a businessman to disrupt Pakistan was a major breakthrough in Pakistan’s war against terrorism and substantiated that India is the criminal that poured terror havoc by aiding the massacre of thousands of Pakistanis using its subsidiaries like Tehreek e Taliban Pakistan (TTP), Balochistan Liberation Front (BLF), and Balochistan Liberation Army (BLA).

Kulbhushan Jadhav was launched by Indian intelligence agencies with a motive to aid Baloch insurgents and attack CPEC projects. His network was also tasked to damage Pak-China amity by assaulting Chinese citizens and engineers working on several CPEC related developmental projects in Pakistan.

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He was detained on 3 March 2016 and in his confessional statement, Jadhav admitted that he was a serving Indian naval officer and working for RAW with a cover name “Hussain Mubarak”. He also disclosed that he was the one behind the deteriorating law & order situation in Karachi. Lately, a Pakistani court sentenced him to death under the charges of espionage and terrorism in April 2017.

India however officially denied any connection with Jadhav but some prominent Indian journalists bluntly showed the facts that clearly indicate that Jadhav was an Indian asset on a sabotage mission in Pakistan. Journalist Praveen Swami in his article in The Front Line on 26 April 2018 identified that Jadhav got into the spy-world in 2001 after a near-war situation between Pakistan and India following attacks on the Indian parliament. He further added that Jadhav traveled to Iran under passport no: E6934766 recognizing him as Hussain Mubarak Patel where he set up Kaminda Trading Company to cover his clandestine motives.

Another prominent Indian journalist Karan Thapar in his piece of opinion in Indian Express titled ‘The mysterious Mr. Jadhav’ on 21 April 2017 raised suspicions over the circumstances which Kulbhushan has met with saying A. S. Dulat a former RAW chief unhesitatingly said that “Mr. Jadhav could be a spy”.

Chandan Nandy in a story printed by The Quint in 2018 exposed that initially, two former RAW secretaries refused to hire Kulbhushan as a spy in Pakistan because he was considered as a low-grade operative having inadequate skills. The story published by The Quint titled ‘Two Ex-RAW Chiefs did not want Kulbhushan Jadhav recruited as spy’ was taken down later over immense pressure by the security circles.

Sending Kulbhushan to Pakistan and abetting proxies is a clear desecration of International Law by India. As per Article 8 of the International Law Commission being adopted by the UN, “The conduct of a person or group of persons shall be considered an act of a State under international law if the person or group of persons is in fact acting on the instructions of, or under the direction or control of, that State in carrying out the conduct”. 

Jadhav’s assignment was not only to spy for Indian intelligence but was a part of a much larger wicked intrigue aimed to hurt the regional quietude. On one side, Jadhav was providing patronage to terrorism inside Pakistan and targeting CPEC projects, on the other hand, he was operating from Iran’s Chahbahar port, a port India wanted to raise as an offset to CPEC. So at the same time, he was compromising the interests of three major countries. Any sort of misgiving between these regional players would actually have resulted in a situation with unstipulated outcomes.

India has also been using Afghan soil to conduct subversive operations inside Pakistan. The Afghan public is deliberately indoctrinated against Pakistan by India which was on a mission to destroy Pakistan by surrounding it from all sides. 

Under the garb of training and reconstruction mission in Afghanistan, India has been using its consulates in various parts of the war-torn country as sanctuaries and launch pads to infiltrate terrorists inside Pakistan and flare up pessimism between two brotherly countries. While doing so India has also undermined the interests of the United States and its allies by using the war against terrorism to further its evil agenda.

Indo-China acerbic ties are also raising alarms of an armed conflict. India’s unlawful claim over Chinese territory has given birth to another regional faceoff and despite numerous corps commanders level meetings, India’s obstinacy came in the way of finding a solution to the quarrel over LAC and Ladakh.

Through its trouble-making demeanor, India wants to reap wishful benefits in the region, though the idea is proving to be counterproductive so far. The country is not realizing that with such a hostile and rowdy mindset it is becoming detrimental not just to itself, but putting the lives of 2 billion people of South Asia on the clemency of starvation, illiteracy, unemployment, and pushing them into the darkness of paucity.

These circumstances are not only worrisome for the regional countries, but the entire globe might feel the cataclysmic outburst if any skirmish between the nuclear foes of South Asia turns into a full-fledged war. To avert such global devastation, the world must convince India to comply with International Laws and the UN’s charter, else may be sanctioned severely if acts otherwise.

*Shahid Farooq Abbasi is an Islamabad based freelance journalist and security analyst with a special focus on regional affairs. He can be reached at [email protected]

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