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Wednesday, 31 August 2016


UNKNOWN FACTS ABOUT KASHMIR TERRORISM._ 👁 👁 *EYE OPENER* 👁 👁 _State of J&K Under India ( Area wise 101380 sq Km) Excluding POK._ _*Kashmir : 15%*_ _*Jammu : 26%*_ _*Ladakh : 59%*_ *85,000 sq Km comprising 85% area are not Muslim Majority.* _Population - 1.25 Crores_ *Kashmir : 69 Lakhs.* _(Only 55 Lakhs speak Kashmiri. Rest 13 lakhs speak Non kashmiri languages.)_ *Jammu : 53 Lakhs.* _(Dogri, Punjabi, Hindi)_ *Ladakh : 03 Lakhs.* _(Ladakhi language)_ _This does not include 7.5 lakh people settled who do not have citizenship._ There are 22 districts in J&K. Out of which *only 5 Districts where separatists have the say ;* _Srinagar, Anantnag, Baramullah, Kulgam and Pulwama._ *Other 17 districts are Pro India.* _So separatist's writ runs in just 15% of the population which are Sunni Muslim dominated._ _Interestingly these 5 districts are far away from Pakistan Border/LOC._ *There are more than fourteen major Religious/ ethinic groups comprising 85% of the population of J&K who are Pro India.* _These include:_ _Shias ;_ _Dogras: (Rajputs, Brahmins & Mahajans);_ _Kashmiri Pandits;_ _Sikhs;_ _Buddhists ( Ladakhis );_ _Gujjars;_ _Bakarwals;_ _Paharis;_ _Baltis;_ _Christians & many more._ *Majority of the people in J&K do not speak Kashmiri as their mother tongue. It's Dogri, Gujjari, Punjabi, Ladhaki , Pahari etc.* _Only 33 % people in Kashmir speak Kashmiri & this group controls narrative from Hurriyat to militants and from NC and PDP._ _This 33% controls *business, bureaucracy & agriculture*. This sunni 33% is opposed to India although population of all other muslims in JK is 69 %._ *Shias (12%), Gujjars Muslims (14%), Pahadi Muslims ( 8%), Buddhists , Pandits, Sufis, Christians and Jammu Hindus/ Dogras ( aprox 45%) are totally opposed to separatism and Pakistan.* _Stone pelting , Hoisting of Pakistani flags & Anti India demonstrations are held in just 5 Districts in Kashmir valley._ *Other 17 districts have never participated in such activities.* *Poonch and Kargil have above 90% Muslim population. There has never been an Anti India or separatist protest in these districts.* _It is only the_ *Anti National Media and other Anti India forces* _who with their own nefarious designs have_ *created an impression that "WHOLE J&K" is against India.* _*Whereas the truth is that just 15% of the Population comprising Sunni Muslims inhabitating 5 Districts of Kashmir province are fanning the separatist activities.*_ _Please spread this message to every INDIAN to UNITE and SAVE the Sovereignity of Our Nation and Defeat the Nefretious Designs of Pakistan and root out terrorism._

Tuesday, 30 August 2016

PM MODI IS the PRIME TARGET of the INDIAN MEDIA.-Capt. Ravi Mahajan Retd. If You Can Not Stand Behind Our Troops, have Guts to Stand In Front Of Them!

PM MODI IS the PRIME TARGET of the INDIAN MEDIA. But it takes different shapes. A 19 year old lady Sniper was keeping a watch with her binocular on a road that led to a NATO military base when she observed a man digging the road. She shot him. It turned out that he was a bomb maker for the Taliban, and was burying an IED (Bomb)that was to be detonated when a Canadian patrol walked by 30 minutes later. It would have certainly killed and wounded several Canadian soldiers. The interesting fact of this story is that from a distance of 725 yards, she shot the Terrorist as he was bent over burying the bomb. The shot went through his butt and into the bomb, which detonated. Regretfully, Terrorist was blown to Pieces. The Canadian Army made a Motivational Poster of her with following caption: “Folks, that's a shot 25 yards longer than seven football fields! And the last thing that came out of his mouth was his ass!” That is Canada! But had it been India, likely aftermath would have been something as; 1. J&K State declares hartal and violent demonstrations follow. 2. Indian Civil Right Groups demand an enquiry. 3. Teesta Setalwad says the man was just answering nature's call and files a case against Modi accusing him of ordering the fire. 4. Late Hussain (God bless his soul) would have drawn a bare butt to honour the slain victim. "The Hindu" would have hailed Hussain's freedom and artistry. 5. Team Barkha Dutt, Rajdeep Sardesai, Pronoy Roy et al, will debate for a week if it was correct to fire at the butt. 6. The Sniper Girl faces departmental Enquiry and Suspension. 7. Manmohan, Mulayam, Mamta, Laloo, Rahul, Digvijay, Nitish, Kejri (all PMs in the making if are able to replace Modi) & Mehbooba, are sleepless and want the Government to pay a Compensation of Rs. One Crore to the victim's family!! Please do not let our anti-Culture, anti-Religious & anti-National MEDIA have a field day and last laugh at us and our Troops who are defending us with their Lives. Where and What will be without them? Edited and Forwarded by Capt. Ravi Mahajan Retd. If You Can Not Stand Behind Our Troops, have Guts to Stand In Front Of Them!

New defence deal a firm indicator that US regards India as a rising, responsible global power - Firstpost Prakash Nanda Aug 31, 2016

New defence deal a firm indicator that US regards India as a rising, responsible global power - Firstpost Prakash Nanda Aug 31, 2016 New defence deal a firm indicator that US regards India as a rising, respon... By Prakash Nanda In other words, contrary to what the critics say, under the LEMOA, India will not fight America’s wars and the v... Strange it may seem, but it is true that the most important outcome of the ongoing visit of Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar to the Unites States has been grossly underplayed. And that is understandable, given the opportunity this development will provide to the Modi government’s formidable critics in the days to come. It is worth noting that over the last one year or so, Parrikar and his American counterpart Ash Carter have interacted on six occasions. This is Parrikar’s second official visit to the US. Carter was here in New Delhi in April. Though Parrikar’s visit is strictly on at the moment, the US Department of Defence has already brought out the "joint statement" of the visit. Expectedly, the statement has mentioned how in the sphere of defence, both India and the Unites States have come a long way ever since the two countries signed the New Framework for Defence Cooperation in June 2005. This June, the summit meeting at Washington between President Barack Obama and Prime Minister Narendra Modiin June resulted in India being designated as "a major defence partner of the United States", thus adding teeth to the two countries’ 2012 creation of the Defence Technology and Trade Initiative (DTTI). Being a major defence partner is a framework that is supposed to facilitate innovative and advanced opportunities in defence technology and trade cooperation between India and the US. In between, by surpassing Russia, the Unites States has become India’s biggest arms supplier. Besides, India is now a country with which the United States conducts the largest number of peace-time military exercises bilaterally every year (nearly 70). All these have fitted well into their respective big scheme of things, with United States focusing on "a rebalance to the Asia-Pacific" and India reaching east to extend its reach in the broader Indo-Asia-Pacific region (Act-East policy). However, in my considered view, the most important part of the joint statement happens to be just two-and-half lines mentioned in its second last paragraph: "They (Carter and Parrikar) also welcomed the signing of the bilateral logistics exchange memorandum of agreement (LEMOA), which will facilitate additional opportunities for practical engagement and exchange." To begin with, LEMOA is a term that one has heard for the first time in the vocabulary of the Indo-US defence parlance. During his India-visit in April, Carter was using the term 'Logistics Support Agreement' (LSA), which the United States, incidentally, had been pressing India since 2004, along with Communication and Information Security Memorandum of Agreement (CISMOA) and the Basic Exchange and Cooperation Agreement (BECA). CISMOA would allow the United States to supply India with its propriety encrypted communications equipment and systems, so as to first secure peacetime and wartime communication between high-level military leaders on both sides, and then extend this capability to Indian and US military assets, including aircraft and ships. BECA would set a framework through which the United States could share sensitive data to aid targeting and navigation with India. According to the Americans, the Indo-US strategic partnership can be really meaningful and enhanced once New Delhi signs LSA, CISMOA and BECA. Signing on the LSA has been the first step in that direction. The then United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government led by Manmohan Singh was all for the conclusion of the LSA, but it did not have the courage to go for actual signing, afraid as it was that the opposition and Left-leaning experts will consider it as formalising a military alliance with the US by violating its traditional policy of not allowing foreign military presence (howsoever temporary it may be, on its soil except for purposes of training and joint exercises) and that China will be angered in the process. With the coming of the Modi government, it was thought that a favourable decision would be taken at the earliest; but that did not happen. The Modi government was also being constrained by the same factors. As a result, the much-anticipated conclusion of the LSA did not materialise during carter’s April visit. That time, Parrikar and Carter only agreed “in principle” to sign a “Logistics Support Agreement”, the then joint statement said. Now, four months after, we have that agreement; an agreement which the Americans have been pressing for 12 years, since the sixth meeting of the India-US Defence Policy Group (DPG) in June 2004, to be precise. What then is the LSA, sorry, now LEMOA? It is the India-specific version of the Acquisition and Cross-Servicing Agreement (ACSA) that the US has with many of its North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (Nato) allies. Under this Agreement, the US agrees to provide Logistics Support, Supplies and Services (LSSS) to military forces to countries or organisations in return for the reciprocal provision of logistics support, supplies and services by such governments or organisations to the US military forces. The LEMOA would come into picture during joint military exercises, training requirements, deployments, unforeseen emergencies, exigent circumstances, peacekeeping and disaster relief operations, and wartime needs as well as exercises to correct logistic deficiencies which cannot be met by a nation on its own, according to available literature. It will provide military commanders' "enhanced operational readiness and cost effective mutual support". It means that the military personnel of India and the US can use each other’s equipment (mentioned under LSSS), including food, water, clothing, medical services, accommodation, transportation, petroleum, oils, lubricants, storage services, communication services, and base operations support. Importantly, all these are paid-services, that is, the country using other’s facilities will bear the economic cost. Besides, the agreement prohibits the exchange of major weapons and weapon-platforms such as fighter aircrafts, ships, missiles and bombs, let alone nuclear weapons. Also, every request of one party would be acceded to by the other only after a review. Thus, no party is bound to agree for every respect; it can say no if its national interests dictate so. What is most significant is that the LEMOA would not permit permanent base rights for the military forces in either country. Nor for that matter it compels one to commit its forces for the military operations by the other. In other words, contrary to what the critics say, under the LEMOA, India will not fight America’s wars and the vice-versa. In fact, this point was made very clear by none other than the then External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee (currently our President). He had said: "This (LSA) does not envisage providing military facilities to US forces. Neither does it provide for unqualified Indian support to the US in any armed conflict to which India is not a party." He had also emphasised that the proposed agreement "does not carry any commitment to assist each other during periods of armed conflict". The point that emerges is that even under LEMOA there is freedom for both the sides to decline any request for logistical support if that is not in one’s national interests. So the apprehensions of all those who love US-bashing are highly misplaced. As regards the sensitivities of China and Pakistan (in fact, as I write this piece, there are angry reactions from Pakistan and China to the conclusion of the LEMOA), the lesser said the better. China can hurt India’s core national interests by denying it the access to the Nuclear Supply Group, threatening it against carrying out natural explorations in the South China Sea, intervening in Kashmir and arming Pakistan to its teeth, both in nuclear weapons and missiles, but it has a problem if we protect our long term strategic needs by collaborating with friendly countries. All told, the LEMOA is a firm indication that the US wants to be a partner in increasing the operational outreach of Indian armed forces and that it regards India as "a rising power and a responsible global power", something China will never do

A.S. Dulat Is Wrong, Dialogue Won't Solve The Kashmir Problem

A.S. Dulat Is Wrong, Dialogue Won't Solve The Kashmir Problem In a recent interview to The Wire, former RAW chief A.S. Dulat suggested that the only way to solve the Kashmir ... In a recent interview to The Wire, former RAW chief A.S. Dulat suggested that the only way to solve the Kashmir imbroglio is through dialogue, not aggression. I submit that Mr. Dulat's statements in this context are meaningless clichés and platitudes. They are totally superficial, and reflect little understanding of the realities of the Kashmir problem. Those who think that mere political dialogue can resolve the Kashmir problem are living in a fool's paradise. They do not know what is really happening. So, let me explain. Kashmiri militants are using sophisticated weapons and other supplies. Where are these sophisticated weapons and supplies coming from? Such sophisticated weapons and supplies do not fall from the sky. Obviously, some outside power is supplying them and training the militants to use these weapons. But more on that later. As for the demand for Azadi, I have already explained why I think it is misguided and reactionary in an article published on HuffPost. Such Azadi will be against the interests of Kashmiris, as it will result in the spread of Islamic fundamentalism and take the Valley back to the Dark Ages. Moreover, Azadi, even if achieved, will not last long. Kashmir will soon thereafter be swallowed up by Pakistan, and come under the Pakistani military jackboot. The demand that Kashmiris should be making is for the reunification of India and Pakistan (and Bangladesh) under a strong, modern-minded secular state which while guaranteeing freedom of religion to all does not tolerate religious extremism of any sort, whether Hindu or Muslim, and crushes it with an iron hand. This reunited state must then rapidly industrialize the country and ensure a high standard of living to all. Such reunification will not be easy, of course, and will take 15-20 years. Until then the Kashmir pot will keep boiling, however sad and unfortunate that may be. Now, to return to the points that Mr. Dulat makes in his interview. 1. The Indian government should engage in talks. But with whom? Mr. Dulat says we should begin with the Hurriyat. But the Hurriyat is a separatist organization which wants Kashmir separated from India, as its leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani has repeatedly said. What is the point in talking with them? As for talks with Pakistan, they will keep harping on Azadi for Kashmir. Moreover, Pakistan is a fake, artificial entity (I refuse to call it a country) created by the British on the basis of the bogus two-nation theory to ensure enmity between Hindus and Muslims even after their departure. So what is the point in talking with them either? Mr. Dulat completely misses a key point. As I mentioned, militants are using sophisticated weapons that are clearly being supplied by outside powers. Moreover, militants demanding Azadi, such as Burhan Wani, are only brainwashed pawns. The power which is behind these pawns, the real chess player who is using them, is China (through Pakistan), as I have explained in a previous blog. Please do read it in order to understand the real game of China. 2. We should follow "Vajpayee's way", but what exactly is that? Mr. Dulat says the BJP-PDP alliance has angered the Kashmiris and that we should follow "Vajpayee's way". Again, a meaningless platitude. He says that Vajpayee is revered in the Valley. I have not heard a single Kashmiri of today saying we want to follow "Vajpayee's way" (whatever the expression may mean). And to blame the BJP-PDP alliance for the mess in Kashmir is overlooking the underlying realities. There is a strong foreign power, China, acting through its new surrogate, Pakistan. It's true that a large section of Kashmiris have joined the agitation, but I want to emphasize again that they are being used by China and Pakistan. They are like mindless pawns used by unseen chess players. I've outlined China's motives in this blog. If Kashmir becomes Azad, will the Kashmiris really be free? No, of course not. The power which has supplied sophisticated weapons, etc to the Kashmiri militants will then demand its pound of flesh, and make the Valley its neo-colony, and exploit it for its own benefit, and not the benefit of Kashmiris. 3. "Insaniyat, jamuriyat and Kashmiriyat" Mr. Dulat invokes these concepts. But they all are meaningless moral platitudes, conveying nothing, and overlooking the underlying realities, as explained above. 4. The Musharraf "four-point formula" Mr. Dulat talks favourably of the "Musharraf four-point formula" which, according to him, was acceptable to all the Kashmiris, including the separatists. It was peace on the line of control, with going and coming and open borders and more interaction between the two Kashmirs, trade, armies pulled back. The demand that Kashmiris should be making is for the reunification of India and Pakistan (and Bangladesh) under a strong, modern-minded secular state... So according to Mr. Dulat, we should open the border with POK and let more militants walk in. The army should be pulled back so that the militants may have a field day, bringing the entire Valley under their grip, imposing Islamic fundamentalism and Sharia law, which will drag Kashmir back into the middle ages. Obviously neither Mr. Dulat nor the Kashmiri agitators for Azadi understand this. Azadi can only be a means to an end, and not an end itself. The end must be raising the standard of living of the people. I have repeatedly said that if it can be demonstrated that Azadi will raise the standard of living of the people of Kashmir -- i.e. provide large scale employment, provide healthcare, tackle poverty -- I will support it. But neither Geelani nor Burhan Wani nor any of their cohorts and associates have ever spoken or even thought of that. It's now hopefully clear why I say that Mr. Dulat's analysis is totally superficial, and entirely overlooks the realities of the situation in Kashmir

Kashmir unrest: India must end Pakistani agenda of replacing Sufism with Wahabism

Kashmir unrest: India must end Pakistani agenda of replacing Sufism with Wahabism Prakash Katoch Aug 30, 2016 15:26 IS George Fernandes as defence minister, once arriving at Srinagar, was informed that a large crowd had gathered at Baramula and was chanting “Azadi, Azadi”. In his characteristic style, he decided to drive down with minimum security to meet the crowd. On sighting him, the crowd got restive and the shouts got louder. He listened to them for sometime before raising his hand to indicate he wanted to speak. He then told them, “Hamen bhi azadi chahiye” (we also want freedom). There was a stunned silence following his statement. Fernandes then amplified “Hamen bhi azadi chahiye corruption aur berozgari se” (we also want freedom from corruption and unemployment). Now the question is which government in Jammu and Kashmir has: Addressed unemployment; made efforts to industrialise the state; defined a roll-on-plan to create jobs; explained to youths that stable environment is essential for industrialisation in order to create jobs, and articulated conditions and unemployment in Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir and the rest of India. Sure, youths in the Valley want employment, but then Maoists too pasted posters (20 July, 2016) demanding employment for local masses, simultaneous to triggering bomb blasts at an under-construction Constable Training Centre under Jadugora police station in Jharkhand, though no one was injured. What is the public participation in administration in Jammu and Kashmir? Some three years back, Delhi Policy Group held a two-day workshop for all MPs and MLAs/MLCs of Jammu and Kashmir in Delhi. Their grouse was Panchayats in Jammu and Kashmir had no powers and no finances. When asked what were they doing about being politicians in power, their response was that the state government doesn’t permit it. Little wonder sarpanches and panches were being killed periodically, being dispensable commodity. What is the status of panchayats in Jammu and Kashmir today is anybody’s guess but the fact remains that if grass root public participation in administration is denied, it not only breeds more corruption but also increases discontent. Ladakh and Jammu regions are open about the state government’s step motherly treatment, but does the state government have no compunctions about not sharing the winter misery with the public in the Valley? Why is this royal practice of moving the Durbar to Jammu in winters not dispensed with, when the business of moving the British Durbar from Delhi to Shimla in summers was buried decades ago? If the Jammu and Kashmir government stays put at Srinagar during winter, Valley public surely would be better off by way of electricity, water, commodities, open banks, road clearance etc. Can the present government make a break from this tradition with all the comforts at their disposal anyway? Kashmiri Pandits were forced out from the Valley, years back but is the Valley turning to Islamic radicalisation? Strangely, a country like Bangladesh is openly talking of the scourge of Islamic radicalisation but we are shy of using the term. Zakir Naik would not have been probed, had Bangladesh not asked us to do so. Sure Pakistan is fully into Islamic radicalisation with China-aided nukes tucked in its pocket. But this is despite facts brought out by the University of Maryland Global Terrorism Database that of the 1,67,221 terrorist related fatalities in period 2001-2015, 75 percent of these have been in 25 Muslim-majority countries (Muslims killed by Muslims) albeit fatalities have also included non-Muslims. The US and Western Europe with combined 3,689 fatalities (including 2,977 during 9/11) account for just 2.2 percent of total terrorist related fatalities during same period. Pakistan began going down the terror vortex since Wahabi-Salafi concepts were embraced by Gen Zia-ul-Haq. Pakistan has been making every effort to replace Kashmir’s Sufi culture with Wahabism and appears succeeding to some extent. If MP Muzaffar Hussain Baig says that the Kashmir conflict is on verge of merging with Islamic State’s global war, it didn’t happen overnight and shouldn’t be taken lightly. Maps on internet show IS official branches in Afghanistan (Nangarhar), Pakistan (Karachi and Peshawar) and in Bangladesh – latter confirmed recently by US Secretary of State John Kerry. The Velayet Khorasan in Afghanistan was cobbled together in Peshawar by Pakistan’s ISI and has elements of Lashkar-e-Taiba and Jaish-e-Mohammad; LeT and JeM operating in Pakistan confirmed in report of UN Assistance Mission Afghanistan (UNAMA) released in July 2016. Voice of America says Afghanistan has officially told Pakistan that Hafiz Saeed, former LeT chief is directing IS operations in Afghanistan. This is separate from Hafiz Saeed of Velayet Khorasn killed recently. In the US-led GWOT or other counter-terrorist campaign, de-radicalistion has always been given short-shrift or ignored. US, European aid to a country like Pakistan was never linked to de-radicalisation. We too have never given due thought to how and with what means Sufi culture of the Valley is being replaced by Wahabism; information warfare, optimizing Hurriyat hardliners and through religious preachers. We can’t brush the issue under the carpet by simply under cover of “misguided youth”, “terrorists use children and women as shields” and the like. What about the parents of the children – are they under terrorist threat or are they getting radicalised as well, and if so why and how. Don’t they need to be addressed? Has the state ever talked to religious maulvis and religious preachers since they are crucial to radicalisation and de-radicalisation? Should they not be talked to periodically, to review the situation and make course corrections, as required? Why is it always the calls to the Prime Minister or the Home Minister to talk to the public of the Valley? What is the state administration doing? In the instant case the Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister made the first public statement and appearance 15 days after the trouble commenced – only when the Home Minister visited Srinagar. Operations are essential against the hardcore but military solution is not the key, population being the centre of gravity. True blending development with education, protecting population from violence, counter narrative to external information war and taking proxy war into sponsor’s territory are essential. However, continuous de-radicalisation is must, to integrate education system in national mainstream, separate focus for select communities/regions, teachers/religious teachers, youth, girl child/mothers, apprehended terrorists plus cross-section of population liable to support terrorism, alternatives to expend youth energies including employment opportunities. The psychological operations would include exposing terrorist abuses, inform and empower communities to challenge radical ideology, and monitor de-radicalisation versus ongoing radicalisation. Significantly, civil society usually contributes more to the cause of preventing and countering terrorism than encouraging terrorism. Last but not the least is the massive funding of terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir, both externally and from within India. The state cannot absolve itself from these happenings and this needs to be quashed ruthlessly. An all-party delegation, headed by the Home Minister, is reportedly going to Jammu and Kashmir on 4 September. But unless the above issues are addressed holistically, not much may be achieved. At the Heart Security Dialogue held last October in Afghanistan, Salman Khurshid (former external affairs minister) giving keynote address spoke of inter regional civilisation influences and explained that Hinduism is a way of life that embraces all and that “India has Muslim Hindus, Christian Hindus, Buddhist Hindus, Jain Hindus etc - which is common phenomenon”. Ali Akbar Shah (Delhi University) said, “Islamic countries should learn from India where mysticism of all religions including of Islam have been amalgamated and absorbed. As for Islam, India has absorbed both the Islam brought by invaders as well as by sages like Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti”, adding “there is need to revive the true spirit of Islam and while everyone knows what has gone wrong, we need to act to set it right”. Can we have such discourse within India or are we going to let politics hold us to ransom

'During his visit to Vietnam on September 3 -- the first visit by an Indian prime minister in 15 years -- Modi will notice the widespread anti-China sentiment in that country,' says former RA&W officer Jayadeva Ranade.

'During his visit to Vietnam on September 3 -- the first visit by an Indian prime minister in 15 years -- Modi will notice the widespread anti-China sentiment in that country,' says former RA&W officer Jayadeva Ranade. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will have a busy and complicated agenda as he travels to South East Asia in the next few days. He will observe that dark clouds continue to linger on the horizons of the South China Sea well after the Permanent Court of Arbitration at The Hague delivered its decision on July 12. Countries that have maritime territorial disputes with China are increasingly uneasy. During his visit to Vietnam on September 3 -- the first visit by an Indian prime minister in 15 years -- Modi will notice the widespread anti-China sentiment in that country. There is also palpable tension as Vietnam anticipates that China may take some robust steps in the South China Sea in the weeks following the G-20 Summit in Hangzhou on September 3-4. Uncertainty is accentuated by the apparent unwillingness of the US to draw easily identifiable 'red lines.' China's economic and military might has pressured countries in the region and widened fissures in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations further weakening it. The Philippines and Taiwan are already feeling the adverse effects of China's economic pressure. Expectation is high in Vietnam that Modi's visit will not only lend support to Vietnam's stance on the South China Sea, but qualitatively upgrade the bilateral relationship. In addition to defence-related agreements and likely discussions on sale of the Brahmos missiles, assisting Vietnam to become self-sufficient in the production and maintenance of defence equipment, thereby lessening Hanoi's dependence on other countries would contribute to building an enduring relationship. Potential areas of cooperation include pharmaceuticals, information technology, education and hospitals, all areas in which India's private sector has internationally demonstrated capabilities. With an eye towards a long-term relationship with India, for example, Vietnam recently established a Centre for Indian Studies in the Ho Chi Minh National Academy of Politics, which trains upwardly mobile cadres and is directly under the politburo of the Communist Party of Vietnam. Meanwhile, Beijing is trying hard to ensure that the issue of the South China Sea is not raised during the G-20 Summit in Hangzhou as that would derail the agenda and mar the atmosphere. Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi's visit to India was part of this process. Chinese interlocutors state that the visits this week of Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar to the US and that of US Secretary of State John Kerry and US Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker to New Delhi for the second Strategic and Commercial Dialogue have raised concerns in Beijing that India and the US are moving still closer and India could side with the US on the issue. Alluding to the recent statement by Hu Shisheng, director of the Institute of South and Southeast Asian and Oceanian Studies at the China Institute of Contemporary International Relations, which is a think-tank of China's external intelligence arm, the ministry of state security, a Chinese interlocutor hinted that the remark was intended as a warning to India. China, it is learnt, has made special arrangements for Prime Minister Modi keeping in mind his religious preferences! The effort to keep the focus on the economic agenda at Hangzhou saw Wang Yi become the first Chinese foreign minister to travel to Japan in four years when he visited Tokyo on August 23-24. Though the spokesman for China's ministry of foreign affairs clarified at a press briefing that Wang had gone to attend the 8th China-Japan-Republic of Korea foreign ministers' meeting and not for a bilateral visit, there is little doubt that preparations for a one-on-one meeting between Chinese President Xi Jinping and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on the sidelines of the G-20 Summit figured during discussions with his Japanese counterpart. Chinese observers have noted that Abe did not visit the Yasukuni shrine this year. Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida also travelled to China earlier this May. China and the US are also set to announce ratification of a major climate change agreement on September 2, the eve of the G-20 Summit. Beijing sees this G-20 Summit as important for the global economy and intends to push for international acceptance of its economic agenda at the G-20 Summit. It has said it will push for the reform of existing international financial institutions with enhanced representation for emerging markets and developing countries. It will advocate that the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, established under Chinese leadership, can be a useful supplement to the existing international financial system and argue that the 'One Belt, One Road' geo-economic initiative proposed by China, will upgrade economic cooperation and provide new momentum for the economic development of all countries. Security in Hangzhou, the capital of Zhejiang province whose population has a high percentage of Christians, is a major consideration for the Chinese authorities. Over the past many months Zhejiang provincial authorities have cracked down on Christian 'underground' churches and congregations. The authorities additionally seem particularly concerned at possible actions by Islamic extremists. According to a report in the Hong Kong-based South China Morning Post on August 26, Chinese public security authorities in Guangzhou city ordered hostel operators to turn away guests from Afghanistan, Turkey, Iraq, Syria and Pakistan. The prohibition will be in force till October. Dr Peng Peng of the Guangzhou Academy of Social Sciences said the move was not announced to the public but was to reduce security risks at Guangzhou's independent hostels. Separately, measures have been introduced to limit pollution by banning cars and vehicles during certain hours and closing factories. Xi is reportedly scheduled to have one-on-one meetings on the sidelines of the G-20 Summit with Abe, Modi and US President Barack Obama. Anticipatedly important political issues will be discussed then. Jayadeva Ranade, a former additional secretary in the Cabinet Secretariat, Government of India, is president of the Centre for China Analysis and Strategy. ALSO READ •How India gains by selling BrahMos to Vietnam •Why Vietnam Beckons •What China will do next in the South China Sea •What the South China Sea verdict means •How India must stand up to China's provocations •Why engaging China at sea is both unavoidable and necessary

America-India bhai-buy?On the defence front, progress is more tangible. Parrikar’s main objective with Defense Secretary Ashton Carter was to crystallise details of technology transfer issues, the crux of India being designated a “major defence partner”

America-India bhai-buy? August 31, 2016, 3:43 am IST Seema Sirohi America-India bhai-buy? President Barack Obama’s nearly eight years in office form a remarkable arc. He moved from pursuing a G-2 condom... President Barack Obama’s nearly eight years in office form a remarkable arc. He moved from pursuing a G-2 condominium with China, excluding New Delhi, to crafting a joint strategic document with India. Obviously, his advisers — Hillary Clinton was a big fan of G-2 — woke up in time before gains made by the Bush administration with India were squandered. Things warmed up slowly and the trust has certainly grown. But questions remain on how far either is willing to go for the other. To what extent will Washington adjust its broader national security policies in South Asia to bolster India? And how tightly is New Delhi willing to embrace America? It’s noteworthy that the once-reluctant US government today enthusiastically supports making F-16s in India. But will it sell armed Predator drones now that India has joined the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR)? Or would the ancient American logic of not altering the basic military balance in South Asia continue to dominate? Defence minister Manohar Parrikar’s Washington foray was to nail down the big things. He managed to lead India to the signing table after more than a decade of indecision and opposition to sign a logistics agreement, allowing the two militaries to use each other’s facilities. It should extend the Indian Navy’s reach in the east. At the same time, US Secretary of State John Kerry and Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker were in New Delhi for the second Strategic and Commercial Dialogue, leading a team of officials from 12 US agencies. As a senior state department official said, the meetings are an opportunity to “reflect upon where we have come” and “where we want to go”. Obama and Prime Minister Narendra Modi have met seven times since 2014 and will meet again for the G-20 summit in China next month. The key issue for Obama remains the ratification of the climate change agreement to solidify his legacy. Kerry most certainly would have pushed India on that. But India has linked ratification to its membership in the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) where China and a few other countries opposed India’s entry in June. Would Obama spend a bit of his remaining political capital to make things happen before he leaves office? India has met the requirements for admission into the NSG as US officials repeatedly stress. But US diplomatic muscle hasn’t been able to translate eligibility into membership. Yet. On the defence front, progress is more tangible. Parrikar’s main objective with Defense Secretary Ashton Carter was to crystallise details of technology transfer issues, the crux of India being designated a “major defence partner”. Parrikar had to judge what technology the US government is actually willing to part with, given the strong pitch by American defence majors offering to shift entire aircraft production lines to India. Company executives talk in superlative terms but all the lethal stuff (air-to-air missiles, Aesa (Active Electronically Scanned Array) radar and systems to identify friend or foe) is controlled by the US government. Lockheed Martin wants to move its F-16/block 70 manufacturing line to India so long as it gets an order of 100 planes from the Indian Air Force. “The F-16s we would produce in India would be the most advanced and tailored to their requirements,” Abhay Paranjape, director of business development, Lockheed Martin Aeronautics, told me. The IAF has already been “shown” the improvements made since F-16 was in the running for the Medium Multi-Role Combat Aircraft (MMRCA). Besides creating jobs under ‘Make in India’, the process would help the country become part of a valuable global supply chain. “What we have offered is unprecedented,” insists Paranjape. But as always, the devil is in the detail. Contrary to some reports, India will not control who buys the planes or spare parts. It would be Washington. Those getting excited about choking off Pakistan and scoring a ‘strategic win’ should hold their horses. The big questions remain unanswered. Would it be licensed manufacturing and broad technology transfer? Or acquisition by India of technology owned by Lockheed? The latter would make India the owner of intellectual property, allowing for more control on exports. Then there is the mother of all dilemmas: Pakistan uses older versions of the F-16s. The IAF may not want to fly the same aircraft. Sweden’s Gripen, which is also in the running, may score on that front. What’s clear is that New Delhi will drill down and vet what’s on offer to get the best deal and bend the arc India’s way

Logistics agreement with US: Why signing LEMOA is significant for India

Logistics agreement with US: Why signing LEMOA is significant for India Rajeswari Pillai Rajagopalan | Updated: Aug 31, 2016 Logistics agreement with US: Why signing LEMOA is significant for India India does stand to gain a lot more than lose in practical terms. LEMOA strengthens India’s outreach to areas th... India and the United States have just signed the Logistics Exchange Memorandum of Agreement (LEMOA). The agreement formalises an ad-hoc arrangement already in practice and furthers India-US military-to-military cooperation. The agreement, put simply, provides access to each other’s military facilities for fuelling and logistic support on a reimbursable basis. LEMOA, sometimes called a Logistics Services Agreement (LSA), was debated by previous governments as well, but it could not be finalised because of Indian domestic political opposition, which were themselves based on several misperceptions about LSA. But China’s growing military strength and increasing belligerence has led to a conscious strategic choice by New Delhi to get closer to Washington. This has made India a lot more comfortable with the US, which also worries about China’s behaviour and power. LEMOA permits the US and India to use each other’s facilities and provides for easier access to supplies and services for the military forces of the two countries when they are engaged in specific types of activities. These activities are limited to joint military exercises, training, port calls and humanitarian missions and other military activities that both sides mutually agree to undertake. It does not give the US automatic access to Indian military bases or to logistical support, but simply smoothens existing practices. The advantage over the current situation is precisely this: Though the US does currently use Indian military bases and logistics — for example, during joint military exercises — this is managed on a case-by-case basis, which is simply more cumbersome. LEMOA does not necessarily give anything that the US does not already get, but it makes the process more regularised. A big part of the domestic political opposition to LEMOA was based on the misperception that this was an agreement signed by US allies and signing this would therefore make India one too. Nothing could be farther from the truth: In reality, LSA has been signed by around 100 countries, many of which are not US allies. Another misperception about the LSA has been that signing it will make India a party to America’s conflicts and policies, especially in West Asia and East Asia. But this is not true either: Indeed, even most countries formally allied with the US have not been dragged into these wars, let alone those simply signing the LSA. Moreover, India does stand to gain a lot more than lose in practical terms. In one of the more concrete benefits, LEMOA strengthens India’s outreach to areas that were not typically within its reach. With one aircraft carrier in operations, India’s capacity to undertake far sea operations has been fairly limited. Signing LEMOA opens up opportunities such as gaining access to US military bases in Djibouti and Diego Garcia — these are, by no means, insignificant. Indian arrangements with the US for such access open up new options in beefing up India’s logistics capacity for missions in the Indian Ocean. Though India can access such facilities and logistics even now, again, this has to be done on a case-by-case basis, which LEMOA does away with. Lastly, it is politically symbolic — a sign signifying the state of India-US strategic ties. This too worries some commentators, who argue that India should remain independent of both lest China take a more antagonistic line with India. But China’s behaviour has been antagonistic even before, and its behaviour is part of the reason why LEMOA is symbolically important

चायनिज लायटिंगला 'कोल्हापुरी'ची फाईट-BE INDIAN BUY INDIAN BOYCOTT CHINESE GOODS

चायनिज लायटिंगला 'कोल्हापुरी'ची फाईट - सुधाकर काशीद - सकाळ वृत्तसेवा मंगळवार, 30 ऑगस्ट 2016 - 02:30 AM IST Share Link: Tags: chinese lighting, kolhapur lighting, kolhapur कोल्हापूर - गणेशोत्सव, दीपावलीत चायनीज लाईट माळा वापरू नका, हे म्हणायला ठीक आहे. पण त्याला पर्याय फार कमी जणांकडे आहे. कोल्हापुरातील काही व्यावसायिकांनी मात्र हा पर्याय शोधून काढला आहे. "कोल्हापुरी लायटिंग‘ म्हणून या पर्यायाने बेळगाव, गोव्यापर्यंत आपला प्रकाशझोत पोहोचवला आहे. विशेष हे की, कोठे फार मोठी फॅक्‍टरी नसतानाही या कोल्हापुरी लायटिंग व्यवसायाने पाच-पंचवीस नव्हे; तर कोल्हापुरातील पाचशेहून अधिक महिलांना घरबसल्या उद्योग दिला आहे. दीपावली, गणेशोत्सवात लखलखणाऱ्या या देखण्या लाईट माळा जवाहरनगर, सुभाषनगर, गंजी माळ परिसरातील अनेक महिलांच्या कौशल्यातून तयार होत आहेत. आता तर या व्यवसायात मागणी वाढल्याने बसायला उसंत नाही, अशी परिस्थिती आहे. एलईडी बल्बचा वापर असलेल्या या लाईट माळा रोज हजारोंच्या संख्येने पार्सलद्वारे ठिकठिकाणी रवाना होत आहेत. कोल्हापुरातल्या उद्योजक, व्यावसायिकांनी जर मनावर घेतलं तर काय घडू शकते, याचे हे वेगळे उदाहरण ठरले आहे. शिक्षणाशी फारशी तोंडओळख नसलेल्या महिलाही फिटिंग, सर्किटची भाषा यानिमित्ताने बोलू लागल्या आहेत. या लाईट माळांसाठी वेगवेगळ्या रंगाची वायर वेणीसारखी गुंफली जात आहे. ही वेणी तर या माळांचे वेगळे वैशिष्ट्य म्हणून ओळखली जाऊ लागली आहे. सणासुदीच्या काळात रोषणाईला अनन्यसाधारण महत्त्व आहे. ही मानसिकता ओळखून अगदी पंचवीस-तीस रुपये किंमत असलेल्या लाईट माळा बाजारात आणल्या गेल्या. मात्र किमतीच्या तुलनेतच त्यांचे आयुष्य कमी राहिले. किंबहुना दुकानातून बाहेर पडल्यावर या लाईट माळांची गॅरंटी नाही, असे सांगूनच त्याची विक्री होत राहिली. स्वस्तात मिळते म्हटल्यावर घरोघरी या माळा गेल्या. पण काही वेळात बंद पडू लागल्या. या माळांना असलेली मागणी, पण त्याचा खराब दर्जा याचा विचार करून कोल्हापुरातल्या पाच-सहा व्यावसायिकांनी चांगल्या दर्जाच्या माळा कोल्हापुरातच तयार करायचे ठरवले. एलईडी बल्बच्या साहाय्याने माळा तयार करताना त्यांनी हस्तकौशल्यावर भर देऊन माळा बनवण्याचे काम महिलांना दिले. अगदी थोडे प्रशिक्षण दिले की महिलाही घरबसल्या माळा करू शकतात हे त्यांच्या ध्यानात आले व "कोल्हापुरी लायटिंग‘ या व्यवसायाने मूळ धरले. बल्ब, वायर, सर्किट हा कच्चा माल महिलांना घरात दिला जाऊ लागला व त्यातून माळा तयार होऊ लागल्या. घरबसल्या हे काम करता येते, हे पाहून शेजारच्या महिला एकत्र येऊन काम करू लागल्या. आता काही महिला सामूहिकपणे या कामाची जबाबदारी घेतात व रोज शेकडो माळा तयार करतात. माळेसाठी रंगीबेरंगी वायरची खूप छान वेणी बनवतात. आता गणेशोत्सवामुळे तर त्यांनी तयार केलेल्या माळांना फार मोठी मागणी आहे. कोल्हापूर जिल्हाच नव्हे तर बेळगाव व संपूर्ण गोव्यात कोल्हापुरी लायटिंग या नावाने या माळा पोहोचल्या आहेत. युनायटेड, कोहिनूर, इलाईड, बारी, डफळे आदी मंडळी या नव्या व्यवसायात गुंतली आहेत. कालानुरूप किंवा लोकांची गरज ओळखून एखादा नवा व्यवसाय कसा मूळ धरू शकतो. चारशे ते पाचशे कुटुंबांना आधार बनू शकतो याचे "कोल्हापुरी लायटिंग‘ हे उदाहरण ठरले आहे. कोल्हापुरात तयार होणाऱ्या या माळांनी इथल्या कष्ट व कर्तृत्वाचा प्रकाशच सर्वत्र पोहोचवला आहे. याशिवाय चार-पाचशे कुटुंबांना आधार मिळवून दिला आहे. एलईडी बल्बच्या साहाय्याने केल्या जाणाऱ्या या माळा विजेची तर बचत करतात; पण खूप वर्षे टिकतात. - अमित शिंदे, लाईट माळा उत्पादक

चीनला मिरच्या झोंबल्या?-मोदींच्या बलुचिस्तान उल्लेखाने चीन बिथरला आहे

चीनला मिरच्या झोंबल्या? By pudhari भारताच्या सत्तराव्या स्वातंत्र्यदिनी पंतप्रधान नरेंद्र मोदी यांनी केलेल्या भाषणात बलुचिस्तानचा उल्लेख आलेला होता. त्यामुळे पाकिस्तानात खळबळ माजली तर समजू शकते. कारण आजवर तसा उल्लेख कधी झाला नव्हता; पण मोदींच्या त्या वक्तव्याने भारतातलेच काही शहाणे विचलीत झाले होते आणि आता चीनमध्येही अस्वस्थता दिसू लागली आहे. चीनच्या अंतर्गत सुरक्षा मंत्रालयाशी संबंधित असलेल्या एका धोरणकर्त्या संस्थेच्या संचालकाची प्रतिक्रिया अतिशय बोलकी आहे. त्यातून मोदींच्या बलुचिस्तान उल्लेखाने चीन किती बिथरला आहे, त्याची साक्ष मिळते. कारण ही संस्थात्मक प्रतिक्रिया चिनी राजकीय मानसिकतेची चाहूल आहे. भारताने बलुचिस्तान विषयात फार मतप्रदर्शन केले, तर चीनला त्यात हस्तक्षेप करावा लागेल, असा इशाराच हु शिशाँग यांनी दिला आहे. तेच दक्षिण आशियाई अभ्यास केंद्राचे संचालक आहेत. त्यांची भाषाच चीनच्या अस्वस्थतेचं प्रतीक आहे. चीनच्या झिंगझियांग प्रांताला थेट बलुचिस्तानातील ग्वादार बंदराशी जोडणारा महामार्ग चीन अब्जावधी रुपये ओतून उभारतो आहे. शिवाय ते पाकिस्तानी बंदरही चीनच गुंतवणूक करून बांधून देतो आहे. कारण त्यामुळे दक्षिण चिनी समुद्राच्याच मार्गाने कराव्या लागणार्‍या सागरी माल वाहतुकीवर चीनला अवलंबून रहावे लागणार नाही; पण दोन दशकांपासून काम सुरू असलेल्या या बंदर व महामार्गाचे काम सुरळीत होऊ शकलेले नाही. त्यात सातत्याने जिहादी, बलुची व पख्तूनी बंडखोरांनी व्यत्यय आणलेला आहे. साहजिकच पाकसेनेला तिथे बंदोबस्ताला उभे करून काम चालवावे लागत आहे. तरीही व्यत्यय संपत नसल्याने महामार्गाच्या प्रदेशात आता चिनी लालसेना तैनात करण्यात आली आहे. हा महामार्ग बहुतांश बलुचिस्तान, बाल्टीस्तान व गिलगिट या प्रदेशातून जाणारा आहे. त्याला तिथल्या स्थानिक लोकांनी कडाडून विरोध केला असून, आधी पाकिस्तानचे वर्चस्व नाकारणारे हे गट आता तिथून चीनलाही हाकलण्याची मागणी करीत आहेत. त्याला दाद मिळाली नसल्याने आता त्यांनी विभक्त व स्वतंत्र होण्याची मागणी सुरू केली आहे. त्या मागणीला पाठिंबा व प्रतिसाद देणारा भारत हा पहिला देश ठरला आहे. मोदींच्या भाषणातील बलुची आदी स्वातंत्र्य चळवळी व मानवी हक्कांची पायमल्ली यांचा उल्लेख म्हणूनच अतिशय सूचक होता. तेवढ्या नुसत्या शब्दांनी अशा चळवळी चालवणार्‍या पाकिस्तानी असंतुष्टांना हत्तीचे बळ चढले आहे. त्यातून परागंदा झालेल्यांनी जगभरात अनेक जागी निदर्शने आरंभली आहेत, तर खुद्द पाकिस्तानात तशा उठावाला चालना मिळाली आहे. तिथे हस्तक्षेप करण्याची थेट मागणी जगासमोर येऊ लागली आहे. हा नुसता पाकला दिलेला दणका नाही, तर चीनलाही देण्यात आलेला शह आहे. मोदी लाल किल्ल्यावरून काय बोलले व कशासाठी बोलले, त्याचा अर्थ अनेकांना लागला नाही. कारण अशी वक्तव्ये राष्ट्रप्रमुख करतो, तेव्हा त्याचे अनेक संदर्भ असतात. केवळ मनात ऐनवेळी काही आले म्हणून बोलून गेले, असे कधीच होत नाही. वरकरणी निरर्थक वा निरूपद्रवी वाटणार्‍या अशा शब्दात अनेक इशारे व संकेत लपलेले असतात. ते सामान्य माणसाला उमजणारे नसतात, की तर्कबुद्धीने तत्त्वज्ञान मांडणार्‍यांच्या आवाक्यातले नसतात. त्यामागे अतिशय सूक्ष्म स्वरूपाची मुत्सद्देगिरी दडलेली असते. साहजिकच त्यातला इशारा संबंधितांना नेमका समजू शकतो. मात्र त्यासाठी बोलणार्‍याला शब्दात पकडण्याची सोय नसते. पाकिस्तान वा अन्य कुठल्या देशाचे नेते-पंतप्रधान भारतातील मानवी हक्कांच्या पायमल्लीसाठी अश्रू ढाळत असतील, तर भारताचे पंतप्रधानही अन्य कुठल्या देशातील चिरडल्या गेलेल्या सामान्य पीडितांना सहानुभूती दाखवू शकतात. त्या सहानुभूतीला कोणी राजकीय हस्तक्षेप म्हणू शकत नाही; पण अशा शब्दांनी त्या देशातील असंतोषाच्या आगीत तेल मात्र ओतले जात असते. पाकचा राजदूत काश्मिरी फुटीरवाद्यांना मेजवान्या देत असेल आणि पाकिस्तान बुरहान वानीसाठी ‘काळा दिवस’ साजरा करीत असेल, तर भारताला बलुचिस्तानातील कत्तलीवर अश्रू ढाळण्यात कसली अडचण आहे? पण मुद्दा तिथेच संपत नाही. काश्मिरात कितीही हिंसा झाली तरी भारताच्या विकासकामात कुठला अडथळा येण्याची शक्यता नसते; पण ज्या पाकव्याप्त प्रदेशात सध्या असंतोष उफाळला आहे, त्यातून पाक व चीनसाठी भविष्यातील विकासाची गंगा वाहून आणायची आहे. त्यावर त्या दोन्ही देशांचे भवितव्य अवलंबून आहे. म्हणून तिथे असलेला इवलाही असंतोष त्यांच्या संपन्न भवितव्यातली मोठीच अडचण व संकट आहे. त्याच असंतोषाच्या आगीत भारतीय सहानुभूती तेल ओतणारी ठरते आणि मोदींनी नेमके तेच काम स्वातंत्र्यदिनाच्या भाषणातून केलेले आहे. ज्या वाकुल्या पाक-चीन गेल्या दोन-तीन दशकांपासून भारताला दाखवित आहेत, त्याच भाषेत दिले गेलेले हे पहिले प्रत्युत्तर आहे. म्हणूनच पाकिस्तान रडकुंडीला आला आहेच; पण चीनलाही मिरच्या झोंबल्या आहेत. इथे ग्वादार बंदर व महामार्गात भारतामुळे अडथळे येत आहेत आणि तिकडे दक्षिण चिनी समुद्रात चीनविरोधी आघाडीशी भारताने प्रेमाचे संबंध जोडण्याचा पवित्रा घेतलेला आहे. थोडक्यात, पाकिस्तानातील असंतोषाला चिथावणी देतानाच मोदींनी चिनी गुंतवणूक धोक्यात आणायचे पाऊल काही शब्द वापरून केले आहे. हू शिशाँग यांच्या तोंडून प्रत्यक्षात चिनी परराष्ट्र खात्यानेच त्याबद्दल नाराजी व्यक्त केलेली आहे. त्यामुळे लाल किल्ल्यावरून झालेला बलुचिस्तानचा उल्लेख कशासाठी होता, हे हळूहळू अनेकांच्या लक्षात येऊ लागेल.

MUST READ-Modi's Balochistan Riposte Irks Pakistan Lackeys-every stand in favour of the national interests is opposed by the fifth columnists. In the case of our relations with Pakistan, there is a small but vociferous assemblage of anti-national elements who are more loyal to Pakistan than India

Modi's Balochistan Riposte Irks Pakistan Lackeys Major General Mrinal Suman In my earlier article, a query had been raised, “Why does India continue to produce so many Jaichand and Mir Jafars? Is India a cursed nation or is treachery a part of our DNA?” (See “Why does India breed so many traitors” at The response was overwhelming. Everyone agreed with the fundamental premise of the above assertion. However, different reasons were cited for insidious treachery that afflicts our character. There was no unanimity. Whereas the puzzle continues to defy resolution, the gravity of the issue got highlighted once again recently. While addressing the All Party Meet on Jammu & Kashmir on 12 August 2016, Prime Minister Modi reminded Pakistan that it bombs its own citizens using fighter planes. “The time has come when Pakistan shall have to answer to the world for the atrocities committed by it against people in Balochistan and PoK (Pakistan-occupied Kashmir),” he added. The real clincher came during Modi’s Independence Day speech from the ramparts of the Red Fort. "I want to speak a bit about the people in Balochistan, Gilgit, Baltistan, and Pakistan-occupied Kashmir," he said. He went on to reveal that the people of Balochistan, Gilgit-Baltistan and PoK had thanked him a lot in the previous few days. External Reaction The reaction of Pakistani establishment on reference to Balochistan was on the expected lines. It accused India of crossing the ‘red line’ and threatened to raise the issue of Kashmir at the next UN General Assembly session more forcefully. In addition, it registered police cases against the Baloch leaders Brahamdagh Bugti, Harbiyar Marri and Banuk Karima Baloch for supporting Modi's statements on Balochistan. Hamid Karzai, Afghanistan’s former President commended Modi for his comments and asked Pakistan to see the gravity of the situation. “In Balochistan, there is extreme suffering at the hands of extremists promoted by state structures in Pakistan,” he said. Similarly, Bangladesh has supported India’s stand on human rights abuses by Pakistan in Balochistan and hailed Modi for his Independence Day speech. As regards the US government, it declined to comment on Modi’s Balochistan reference. However, the remarks of Lisa Curtis of the Washington-based ‘The Heritage Foundation’ are noteworthy. ‘The Heritage Foundation’ is a highly influential think tank, considered close to the Republican Party. Lisa feels that the reference signals a change in the Modi government's Pakistan policy. She is of the view that Pathankot airfield attack appears to have convinced Modi that forbearance paid few dividends for India. According to her, by referring to Balochistan, Modi has laid down a marker that his government would be less patient than its predecessors when it comes to Pakistani terrorist provocations. Expectedly, the world at large has displayed great understanding of India’s stand. Not a single country has faulted India for its statement on Balochistan. The world knows that Pakistan has been waging an intense asymmetric war through the export of terrorism to fuel turmoil and chaos. It is also aware of India’s repeated efforts to improve relations with Pakistan through talks. Internal Opposition As has been our wont, every stand in favour of the national interests is opposed by the fifth columnists. In the case of our relations with Pakistan, there is a small but vociferous assemblage of anti-national elements who are more loyal to Pakistan than India. The Paki-Lackeys oppose reference to Balochistan on ignobly invented grounds. One, it is said that reference to Balochistan would amount to an admission of Indian meddling in the region. It is conveniently forgotten that Pakistan has always been blaming India for its troubles in Balochistan. Further, the maximum damage to India’s stand of non-interference was done at the Indo-Pak Prime Ministers’ meet at Sharm-el-Sheikh in 2009. On Pak insistence, India agreed to include the sentence – ‘Pakistan has some information on threats in Balochistan and other areas’ – in the joint statement. Two, some lackeys are sounding a warning about likely increased aggression by Pakistan in Kashmir through disregarding ceasefire, destroying LOC fencing and inducting more infiltrators. Pakistan has been exporting terror in every possible manner. Since the start of terrorist activities in 1989-90, Indian security forces have captured a huge cache of Pak-supplied weapons from the terrorists. It includes more than 34,000 AK 47 rifles, 5000 grenade launchers, 90 machine guns, 12,000 revolvers, 350 missile launchers, 100,000 grenades and 63,000 kg explosive. Even anti-tank and anti-aircraft guns have also been seized. One wonders as to what more, short of a military attack, can Pakistan do. Three, it is alleged that India’s concern for human rights in Balochistan will give a handle to the separatists in Kashmir to raise similar issues. It is an absurd logic. For using young children and women as a shield to attack security forces, Kashmiri radicals are guilty of luring the gullible through monetary enticements. It is they who deserve condemnation. Despite thousands of them getting injured by stones pelted at them, Indian security forces have been exercising exemplary restraint. Four, reference to Balochistan is being opposed on moral grounds. Stoking of unrest in Pakistan is being termed as ‘an unholy tit-for-tat’. It is, perhaps, the most decadent argument. Editorial in a leading Indian daily read, “Since 1990 India has had a consistent policy towards Pakistan: ‘Let them hit us with whatever they can, we will harden our defences but not retaliate in kind’.” The shameless editor had the audacity to term the said policy to be ‘remarkably successful’. Since 1990, Kashmir has seen a loss of nearly 50,000 lives, including terrorists, civilians and security/police personnel. Sitting in his air-conditioned office in Delhi, the insensitive editor had the cheek to state that the policy of no retaliation has been successful. One wonders as to how people of such low calibre and anti-national outlook get to occupy editorial chairs. National Shame Appalling quality of political leaders has been India’s bane. They can stoop to any level – even seeking help from an antagonistic country to unseat duly elected Modi. Hence, it did not come as a surprise when a senior left leader faulted Modi on two counts – it will give an opportunity to Pakistan to internationalise Kashmir issue and it amounts to interfering in Pakistan’s internal affairs. Sounds like the statement of a Pakistani spokesman. Another set of politicians and media personalities keep harping on talks with Pakistan. An editor has blamed Modi for ‘lacking the stamina that is so vital in dealing with Pakistan’, implying thereby that Pak unresponsiveness is also Modi’s fault. No one suggests as to how to engage an intractable and devious neighbour in dialogue. Pak apologists in India are of two kinds. The first assortment consists of political leaders, intelligentsia and media personnel whose dislike for Modi and BJP borders on pathological hatred. It is not their love for Pakistan that influences their response: they have to compulsorily oppose every policy of Modi, even at the risk of harming Indian interests. They do not want Modi to succeed. The second variety is far more insidious and dangerous. It consists of participants of so-called Track-II diplomacy and discussion groups. They enjoy Pak hospitality – first class air travel, grand hotels at exotic locations, lavish looking-after and generous gifts. As a result, they suffer from what is derisively referred to as ‘Biryani Loyalty Syndrome’. For pay-back, they parrot Pak perspective. Ghulam Nabi Fai was the executive director of the Kashmiri American Council, a Washington based front of ISI. He received millions of dollars from ISI to manipulate Indian public figures. Important celebrities, selected by ISI, were regularly invited for ‘brain-storming on Kashmir issue’ and given royal treatment. Fai was arrested in 2011 and sentenced to two years of imprisonment by a US court. It was only then that the perfidy of biryani-fed Indian invitees got exposed. Extent of brainwashing of Indian media can be gauged from the fact that an Indian columnist has been advising India not to focus only on Pakistani support to the Kashmir insurgency. Another writer has been chiding India for throwing its weight around in the neighbourhood. Anti-nationalism at its worst! Finally In a recent article in the Express Tribune of Pakistan, noted Pak writer Yaqoob Khan Bangash has opined that India’s intent to highlight Balochistan does not augur well for Pakistan. “India’s public relations are far better than Pakistan’s and with our international image, Balochistan might become a millstone around our neck on the international stage too,” he cautions. Does it not prove effectiveness of Modi’s Balochistan riposte? For Paki apologists, it is right for Pakistan to cause turmoil in India and attempt its breakup, but not the other way round. It must not be forgotten that nations born out of hatred can never rid themselves of bitterness of history. Hence, Pakistan will never shed its antagonism towards India. Its break-up is the only way out and India must encourage that in its own security interests. It is time that all that nonsense about a united Pakistan being in India’s interests is stopped. There cannot be a more blinkered view. Raising the Balochistan issue was a master stroke and a game changer. If Pakistan can cultivate a Kashmiri separatist constituency within India, India can cultivate a separatist Baloch constituency in Pakistan. If Pakistan can dedicate its Independence Day to Kashmir, India can dedicate its Independence Day to Balochistan, Gilgit, Baltistan, and PoK. In world affairs, timidity is considered a sign of impotence and not sagacity. Counsel of Roman philosopher Cicero must not be ignored by India – “An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself.” India should remain wary of Pak stooges who are on the payrolls of Pakistan. As they fan unrest through their seditious utterances, writings and activities; they need to be exposed and shamed.*****

Monday, 29 August 2016

The unexpected twist in the Kashmir tale-Monday, 29 August 2016 | Balbir Punj

The unexpected twist in the Kashmir tale Monday, 29 August 2016 | Balbir Punj The unexpected twist in the Kashmir tale Daily The Burhan Wani saga was following a predictable script until the Government shot back with pellet guns which hurt the Islamists. Now, the latter must stick with its strategy and steer clear of the restraint-and-dialogue trap The more things change, more they remain same. This old adage comes to mind in the context of the ongoing drama in Kashmir. The actors are new but the script and characters, however, are old. The storyline is predictable, but the end is uncertain. For the present, the macabre show seems to be heading for an intermission. The 70-odd-years old play, no doubt, will start all over again, after the actors get over their fatigue and recoup to fight yet another round. Obviously buckling under mounting pressure from those who have kept the pot boiling in the Valley during the last seven decades, the Union Home Ministry has set up a committee to look for substitutes to replace pellet guns. The rethink on the issue indicates that it’s business as usual. Once again we are in the mood to give much-needed respite to the beleaguered trouble-makers in the Valley. But why this decision to drop pellet guns? Because pellet guns served their purpose and put the fear of the God in those who want to turn the Valley into a clone of either Pakistan or the Islamic State, or both. Poke-marked faces and bodies are bad advertisement for those trying to motivate the faithfuls to joinjihad. The repulsive sight obviously frightens potential mischief-makers. So no new recruits. No wonder the jihadis hate pellet guns. The current phase of unrest in the Valley has a familiar beginning: Burhan Wani, an AK47-wielding terrorist, is killed in an encounter. His death becomes a catalyst; re-kindling the fire of jihad which was lying dormant for a while; mobs take to the streets, setting public property on fire, vandalising police stations and stone-pelting security forces; Slogans for azadi are heard and so are slogans wishing death to India; there is the waving of the Pakistani and now the Islamic State flags. The true agenda is revealed. All this talk about rule of law, democracy and human rights is a smokescreen. The aim is to establish a regime dictated by sharia’h in which there is no place forkafirs or pre-Islamic mofits. To this end, the script has played out on predicable lines. Now comes the proverbial twist in the tale that has stumped thejihadisand stunned their supporters inside and outside the Valley, and forced them to seek a truce. Earlier, when faced with violent stone-pelting mobs, the heavily out-numbered security forces would just run for cover or get lynched. After such encounters, the jawans are angry, humiliated and demoralised. The jihadis, on the other hand, are elated with a sense of victory. But this time has been different. The frenzied mobs had to face pellets and pay for their sins. It was no longer a one way affair. The bewildered jihadis and their support base, masquerading as human right activists, ‘secular’ politicians and ‘journalists’, are now asking for a ban on pellet guns. The Government seems to be walking into their trap. Why is it re-thinking a strategy that is working well and is effective? Will the trouble-makers decide how and with what weapon they should be dealt with? Can we find a ‘political solution’ by engaging all the stake-holders in dialogue? If a ‘dialogue’ or a series of dialogues were good enough to work out a ‘political solution’, why have we had no luck till date? All such suggestions are a old ploy to buy time to help the mischief-makers re-group and to demoralise the security forces. Have politicians Omar Abdullah, Ghulam Nabi Azad, Sitaram Yechury and Digvijaya Singh who talk in terms of ‘dialogue’ and call for ‘restrain’ on the part the Government ever tell the mischief-makers in the Valley to disassociate themselves from Pakistan, the Islamic State and jihad, not attack security forces, and instead work for the rehabilitation of Kashmiri Pandits? Can any one of them dare to go to the Valley and live among those they speak for, without security? News reports from the Valley indicate that an effort is being made to identify the agent provocateurs who want to keep the pot boiling there. These political viruses are from across the Line of Control and directly linked to Pakistan, where the elected civil Government plays second fiddle to the military-mullah combine. It is instructive to recall that Burhan Wani had declared that his movement was aiming beyond Jammu & Kashmir, to eventually fly the flag of Islam on the Red Fort. Now you know why no ‘dialogue’ has worked till date and will not in the future. Shorn off rhetoric, the jihadis are not asking for more autonomy or development — they want the Valley to secede from India, and to turn it into a cultural extension of the Islamic State and Pakistan, which are terror factories of the world. Can India and the rest of the world opt out of this war? The agitation in the Valley is not one launched by civil society but it is a combination of militants and radical Islamists. There should be no doubt that the Pakistan Army with the support of groups such as the Lashkar-e-Tayyeba want to push India out of Kashmir and install an Islamic regime instead. Fortunately not only for India but for the world, there is now an overwhelming recognition in international capitals including in many Muslim majority countries, of this truth behind the well orchestrated unrest in Jammu & Kashmir. Hopefully the BJP-led Government in New Delhi will not be fooled into cozying upto separatist elements while seeking to resurrect political dialogue with “all stakeholders”. Recognising that these separatist elements, themselves a coalition of leaders with varying, even contradictory agendas, are playing the Pakistani-Islamist game to revive their attenuated clout in the Valley, both Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Minister for Home Affairs Rajnath Singh have not invited the separatist Hurriyat coalition leaders a political dialogue among “all the stakeholders”. There is suspicion that the Pakistan Army and its proxies had set up Wani on the firing line to spark this well-planned stir in Kashmir. While the Pakistan lobby and Islamist radicals in the West have been urging Western media to condemn Indian security forces action in Kashmir as “brutal”, notably the international media has taken care to avoid any such description. The answer to such Islamisation and radicalisation is to continue with a relentless war against the merchants of terror while keeping the door open in New Delhi for talks with those who want peace within the framework of the Constitution. The war is just not to rescue the people and the Valley from the stranglehold of jihadis from across the border, but to prevent this divine land from emerging as a new terror hub.

Scorpene data leak underlines the hazards of India’s dependence on foreign sources for military hardware.

Scorpene data leak underlines the hazards of India’s dependence on foreign sources for military hardware. In the famous words of Ian Fleming’s creation, Goldfinger, “Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. Three times is enemy action”. Given the serial abortion (or sabotage) of every significant Indian defence hardware contract, starting with the Bofors 155 mm gun and HDW submarine contracts in the 1980s, it is, perhaps, time to get a bit paranoid and consider the likelihood of “enemy action” being at the root of such occurrences. After all, what better way could there be for adversaries to disarm and neutralise India’s armed forces than by arranging to scuttle their modernisation plans for three decades running. This would be entirely in consonance with Master Sun Tzu’s adage that, “To subdue the enemy without fighting is the acme of skill”. Hardly had the Augusta-Westland “scandal” receded to the back pages of newspapers when the dramatic revelation, in Australian media, about massive haemorrhaging of data related to the Indian Scorpene submarine project hit the headlines last week. It would appear that the huge “data dump” of over 22,000 document pages, belonging to French shipbuilder DCNS, contains information relating not only to Indian Scorpenes, but also a Russian amphibious ship and a Brazilian stealth frigate. Opinion in the media is divided between those who consider the leaked data to be “sensitive” and potentially damaging to India’s Scorpene submarine force and others, who point out that the “Restricted” stamp carried on each page indicates the commercial nature of what seem to be marketing presentations and generic operating data released as a volley in some corporate war. At this stage, apart from deploring the laxity of the French custodians of leaked Scorpene documents, and suggesting stringent penalties against them, “armchair experts” need to exercise restraint in their comments. At the tactical and operational levels, it is the navy’s submariners and anti-submarine warfare experts who must evaluate the nature of data that has been leaked, and the likely implications of its falling into wrong hands. Since five out of our six Scorpenes are still under construction, it may be possible to either replace some equipment or make software changes to protect the parameters supposedly compromised. In any case, the standard operating procedures and doctrines that will be evolved by our submariners for this class of boat will be Indian Navy specific and will contain adequate defensive and offensive counter-measures to ensure that the subs are not “sitting ducks”. Moving on to the strategic level, my reference, above, to “enemy action” was rhetorical, because the actual “enemy” resides within. The lesson hammered home — yet again — by the “Scorpene leak” is that as long as India remains so abjectly dependent on foreign sources for military hardware, it will continue to be vulnerable to sleaze, scandals and scams that not only bring a bad name to the country but have effectively halted the process of military re-equipment and upgradation. That this should be happening when our northern and western neighbours are re-arming and re-organising their militaries is worrisome. Four issues need to be highlighted because they call for the urgent attention of our decision-making elite. First, as an industrialised nation and a maritime power, the lack of submarine design and building competence had been a critical lacuna in India’s maritime capability. China has been building subs since the 1960s and Pakistan since 2002. It was in pursuit of this “holy grail” that India had signed a contract for acquisition of six HDW Type-209 submarines in the 1980s; two to be constructed in Germany and the other four in India. Sadly, the precious submarine-building capability and expertise, acquired by Mazagon Docks, Mumbai, were killed by myopic policymakers, when they, whimsically, cancelled the contract in the early-1990s after the construction of just two boats on account of kickback allegations. Had we not thrown out the “baby with the bathwater”, the past 25 years would have seen India become an established producer of diesel submarines. Second, in a larger context, we must never forget that India has the dubious distinction of being the world’s largest importer of arms today. This is despite our vast defence-industrial complex, comprising thousands of scientists and a network of sophisticated DRDO laboratories, backed by production facilities of the government-owned ordinance factories and defence public sector undertakings. That our scientists have struggled for decades to design and produce a jet fighter, a battle-tank or a jet engine can be explained away. But it is incomprehensible why we should still be importing rifles, helmets, night-vision devices and even bullet-proof jackets for our jawans. We have also been unable to develop the technology for vital components with military applications, ranging from diesel engines to micro-processors, magnetrons and klystrons. Thus, at the heart of every ship, aircraft, tank, missile or electronic system produced in India, are key items of foreign origin. It is deeply disturbing to note that for the past seven decades, the political leadership has not seen fit to demand accountability for these gaping voids in capability from the defence-science and defence-production establishments. While “Make in India” and the hike in FDI limits in defence are held out as a panacea, unless a tangible, time-bound roadmap is drawn up, for attaining self-sufficiency in weapon systems, there is unlikely to be much change. Such a roadmap will work only if our innovative private sector is tightly integrated into defence research and production. Third, it is time for Indians to face up to a fact that is known to every foreign firm that bids for an Indian contract: Arms deals are the “golden goose” for election funding. Till such time that we attain a modicum of self-sufficiency in military hardware — 20 to 30 years hence — a consensus needs to be struck between the major political parties to treat defence contracts as “holy cows” and exclude them from the purview of election fund-raising. Moreover, since alleged scams come in handy to settle political scores, after every change of government, the bureaucracy has, understandably, become cagey about decision-making in defence acquisition cases. The grounds for such apprehension must be removed. Finally, banning or “blacklisting” of arms companies alleged to be involved in malpractices may appear to be a dramatic antidote because it makes a splash in the media. But in reality, it is counter-productive because it harms our security far more than the impugned firm. Here again, the Scorpene provides an apt example of our proclivity of “cutting off one’s nose to spite the face”. The contract for the torpedo selected for this class of submarines has recently been rejected, at the eleventh hour, because the mother company, Augusta-Westland, has been blacklisted in another context. Thus, at one stroke, we have de-fanged this potent and expensive submarine, and it will take a few years before a new weapon can be acquired for it. By disarming ourselves in this manner, we are thoughtlessly fulfilling the fondest dreams of our adversaries


Harsha Kakar | 30 August, 2016 Indo-Pak relations are slated to remain cold for a prolonged period. Pakistan’s military control over security issues and Indo-Pak talks, as also continued support to anti-India terrorist groups and the present crisis in Kashmir remain stumbling blocks. The statement by Prime Minister Modi from the ramparts of the Red Fort on Independence Day, raising atrocities in Baluchistan as also re-inclusion of Gilgit- Baltistan as a part of POK, indicates that India is in no hurry to contemplate dialogue and is even willing to up the ante. The battle of words between the two nations prolongs the present no war-no peace environment. Pakistan has been able to engage India due to support from China, as also its belief in deterrence provided by its nuclear weapons. On the Kashmir issue, others in the international community have been guarded in their comments, even saying this is an internal matter of India, while talks to resolve the issue should be bilateral. The UN has rightfully ignored Pakistan’s pleading on Kashmir. In this scenario, India needs to effectively plan for the long term. In the defensive domain, we need to develop better military capabilities to deter misadventures and simultaneously launch limited counter strikes below the threshold of war. Modern anti-infiltration measures need immediate attention along the western borders. In the offensive military-diplomatic domain, India needs to aggressively pursue isolation and strategic encirclement of Pakistan. This would enhance their vulnerability and threat. For isolation, India needs to reduce support to Pakistan from its traditional allies. Pakistan was secure in the fact that it was a frontline state for the US in the war against terror. It became so confident of its position that it openly boasted of the support and sanctuary that it provided to the Taliban and the Haqqani network. However, continuous needling by India with its growing proximity and engagement with a variety of Congressmen, forced a change in US policy. This compelled the US government to stop all aid (military and development). In reality, Pakistan has almost been discarded by the US. Similar has been the case with most other western nations. Pakistan then attempted to move closer to Russia and even contemplated purchasing arms from them. It extended an invitation to President Putin to visit the country. Putin refused the visit without assigning any valid reason. India needs to continue to engage with Russia to ensure that Pakistan is ignored. Pakistan’s support to the Taliban and the Haqqani network only increases the vulnerability of the Central Asian Republics (CAR) and Russia to terrorism flowing from the region, hence Pakistan should be ignored unless it changes its state terror policies. The only other group which were Pakistan’s traditional allies were Saudi Arabia and the nations of West Asia. The recent visits by Prime Minister Modi and enhancement of economic and security ties resulted in their assuming a neutral stance, slowly reducing assured support. This success of diplomacy was clearly evident when no country from the region issued any statement on Kashmir. Turkey has remained a staunch Pakistan ally. With present engagements increased post the attempted coup, there could be a scaling down in relations. If India does wean Turkey away, then Pakistan may become akin to North Korea, a satellite state of China. While Pakistan continues to bank on the OIC, the group remains divided due to its internal squabbles and disagreements that its comments are ignored. Strategic encirclement needs greater engagement. Afghanistan-Pakistan relations are moving downhill. The recent burning of the Pakistan flag, just across the border, in support of the Prime Minister’s statement supporting Baluchistan is a clear indicator. Increased Taliban actions in the country have further distanced the two nations. Afghanistan has turned to India for military hardware and training. With passage of time, India would also be able to deploy military advisors in Afghanistan, thus opening the road for a military presence. India should aim to deploy air power in Afghanistan, thereby threatening Pakistan from the west. Such an action would increase Pakistan’s threat and severely impact its Afghanistan policy. With Iran, Pakistan’s relations are cordial, solely for the purpose of being neighbours. Trust deficit exists, as Iran is Shii’te as compared to Sunni Pakistan, propped by Saudi Arabia, a sworn enemy. The Chabahar port project, which India has launched to connect with CAR and Afghanistan would increase India’s presence in the region. Though India will not be permitted to deploy military resources, however it could employ its intelligence elements and increase problems for Pakistan. If the government pushes through permanent deployment of air power resources at the Farkhor air base in Tajikistan, which it operates jointly and has used in the past to support the Northern Alliance in Afghanistan, it would open a new dimension against Pakistan. Internally Pakistan is amongst the most fractured nations in the world. Baluchistan, Gilgit-Baltistan, POK and Sind are troubled provinces. The Prime Minister’s speech and subsequent actions indicated the fear within the Pakistan establishment of options which could open to India in the future. How secure would Pakistan remain with its nuclear arsenal is anybody’s guess. It is aware that its encirclement by India could become a reality and the only option available then would be to become a satellite of China. The fact that Chinese forces are operating in Pakistan to protect the CPEC also indicate China’s lack of trust in Pakistan’s military abilities. The Chinese government directions of denying accommodation to Pakistani nationals in Guangzhou, during the G20 summit, further confirms the low level of faith. Realistically, this policy by India would pay dividends in the future. It could possibly be the only way; Pakistan may be compelled to change and peace would be restored in the sub-continent


My first date with the Horse On popular demand based on the feedback about ‘My tryst with Destiny’, I would devote the next few posts to my experiences at the NDA. Interpolating Anjit Bose’s thoughts – you can take an ex-NDA out of NDA but you cannot take NDA out of him; let us live in nostalgia for a while. (Some ‘padding’ has been done deliberately for non-NDA friends on fb – NDA types will have to bear with me please.) Of all the training (or otherwise) activities at the Academy, horse riding would easily beat all others hands down as the most ‘entertaining’. It not only entertains the ‘ustaad’ and the ‘horse’, it also entertains the un-affected fellow cadets watching from the side lines in the hope that a similar fate does not befall them in the near future. As for my learning from the equestrian lines, I don’t know if I learnt riding or not, but I definitely learnt how to mount and dismount the animal including the inescapable involuntary dismounting during the lane jump in fourth term. So on my first day at the riding class, after being told about the name of the animal (pure ka nnam, ‘ghoda’- angreji mein ‘horse’) and three parts of the horse and how to recognize whether it is a male or female; (by counting its teeth of course – as the cadets are not expected to do look for the obvious sign which is only for the civilians) we were given a demo as to how to mount and dis mount the animal. Then it was our turn to select one horse from the line-up and practice the act repeatedly. Now, to tell you the truth, I was not very keen to mount any horse and so, was deliberately slow in approaching the animal line-up. By the time I reached my destination, all horses were taken up and the one which was left was the tallest – would have been definitely six and a half feet at the saddle as I could barely reach it standing on my toes. So I looked at the ‘ustaad’ with appealing eyes and made the obvious statement, “Ustaad, yeh to bahut uncha hai. Main is par kaise mount karun? His reply is still fresh in my mind – “To apne pitaji ko letter likh kar ek sirhi mangwa lo.” With no scope of changing the horse, I stood on my tip toes and managed to hold on to ends of the saddle and gave my self a push in an attempt to jump and mount as demonstrated. The horse must have realized my predicament and decided to increase the degree of difficulty for this ‘piddly’ cadet. So it started initially a slow trot, then a canter with me hanging on to the saddle for approximately five hundred meters before the horse decided to start galloping. I had no option to loosen my grip and fall in the drain next to the area. When the 'ustaad' saw me in this unscheduled act, he galloped on his horse to my location and added insult to the injury, “Abhi yehan khare hoke sirhi ka intezar karega ya ghora lekar wapas ayega?” Needless to say that whatever little enthusiasm I may have had for riding, died then and there and I some how managed to clear the basic and reached the final term (fourth) for riding. ‘Lane Jump’ is the ultimate test of mating (not literally) of the man and animal together in the poetic “do jism, ek jaan” fashion. So you are made to mount a saddle less horse (obviously without stirrups). Its reign is knotted short over its neck which you can hold by leaning forward. There are ten obstacles of various heights and widths in a lane which I think is about 500 meter long. So the average distance between two consecutive obstacles is 50 meters. The 'ustaad' leads the horse and the rider pair to the beginning of the lane and then gives one whip of his cane at the back of the animal prompting it to start galloping without the word ‘go’. You are taught during practices to lean forward during each jump and also shout “aage”. Whether this “aage” is meant for you or the horse remains a mystery to me to date. Most of the riders manage to survive till the middle of the course before falling off the animal and then running behind it to get hold of him. I leaned forward and shouted “aage” three times but at the third jump, only the horse managed to go “aage” while I fell off “peechhe”. Somehow, no limbs were broken and after a not very long chase, I did manage to retrieve my horse and hand it over to the “saees”. Thankfully, this was the last equestrian event of cadets’ training at NDA with no more involuntary dismounts and running behind the animals.

Chinese scholars are "deeply disturbed" by Prime Minister Narendra Modi's recent reference to Balochistan ,

Chinese scholars are "deeply disturbed" by Prime Minister Narendra Modi's recent reference to Balochistan , a senior expert on Sunday said as he warned of joint steps by China and Pakistan if an "Indian factor" disrupts the $46 billion CPEC, with the region as its hub. "My personal view is that if India is adamant and if Indian factor is found by China or Pakistan in disrupting the process of CPEC (China-Pakistan Economic Corridor), if that becomes a reality, it will really become a disturbance to China-India relations, India-Pakistan relations," South Asia expert Hu Shisheng said. "If that happens China and Pakistan could have no other way but take united steps. I want to say that the Pakistan factor could surge again to become the most disturbing factor in China-India relations, even more than the Tibet, border and trade imbalance issues," he told PTI here. Hu, director of state-run think-tank Institute of South and Southeast Asian and Oceanian Studies at the China Institute of Contemporary International Relations affiliated to the Chinese foreign ministry, said such a scenario could be very disappointing to all the scholars relating to India-China relations. "All the three countries could be badly derailed from their current facts of economic and social development. It could be very bad," he said. Expressing concern over Prime Minister Narendra Modi's reference to the human rights situation in Balochistan in his Independence Day address , he said Chinese scholars were "deeply disturbed by the reference". The Chinese foreign ministry has so far has not commented on Modi's references to Balochistan, which is the hub of CPEC connecting China's Xinjiang province with Pakistan. "I think the two countries (China and Pakistan) will do whatsoever to enhance the security and smooth construction of the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor. But what kind of forms I have no idea. "I am just wondering whether military involvement could be one of the choice but in my personal view, it is very unlikely," he said in response to a question on the nature of China's involvement and maintained that the views are his personal made in the interest of India-China relations. He also said China is unlikely to change its policy in South Asia. Besides a host of energy-related projects, the CPEC consists of rail, road and pipelines to ferry oil and gas from Balochistan port Gwadar to Kashghar in Xinjiang through Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK). Welcoming the formation of the special mechanism for talks during Chinese foreign minister Wang Yi's recent visit to India to resolve differences, Hu said the two sides can hold wide-ranging talks on CPEC, NSG and India's bid to ban Pakistan-based JeM chief Masood Azhar in the UN. He also said that CPEC is "for the regional stability". "This is also China's purpose to carry forward with this giant project jointly with Pakistan. If CPEC is completed not only China and Pakistan but also Afghanistan, India and Iran can benefit a lot. "It is quite open. In future, some Indian regional development initiatives can use the physical development of CPEC like India's connectivity to the Central and West Asia, Gulf region, India's projects in Chabahar port in Iran," he said. He claimed the CPEC will not disturb the sovereignty claim of Pakistan and India in the Kashmir issue. "It is quite clearly written in the 1963 border treaty of Pakistan and China. One of the clause clearly stated that if Pakistan and India finally reach agreement on Kashmir issue then the treaty would be accordingly amended. "The CPEC construction is conducive to regional stability including China's Xinjiang. China dare not give up the management and frontier regional development just for being sensitive to the Indian concerns over Kashmir issue. China has its own national concerns, especially stability of Xinjiang," he said. "If Indian concern is too much, China is also one part of the Kashmir issue. If the accession (area by Pakistan to China) is regarded by India as one part of the problem then let the three of us sit down to talk. Whatever happened in the past, it has not become so serious then let us talk about it. "Do not let it stand in the way of our respective socio economic development and do not allow it to come in the way of China-India cooperation," he said. Asked about India's concerns over terrorism emanating from Pakistan, Hu said Islamabad should address India's concerns for its own development. He also said there are differences between Pakistan's civil and military over crucial issues. "Some times they don't agree with each other on some sensitive issues. My concern is that if India become more hawkish, hostile, it could only create more troubles for Pakistan," he said. Hu also said there is difference between CPEC and South China Sea dispute where China objects to India taking up oil drilling projects in Vietnam. China stands for joint development of the South China Sea region but other countries which have claims in the region opposed such a concept, he said. He added that China is concerned over close India-US relations. "In the past Chinese scholars are not so much concerned about India-US ties. We strongly believed that India's strategic independence can be trusted and can be maintained. "In recent years, Indian strategic independence is facing some challenges because of security issues. The cooperation has been going really far more forward in the past one year," he said. ४) Bookganga :- ४) Bookganga :-

मेहबूबांचा साक्षात्कार -DIVYA MARATHI

मेहबूबांचा साक्षात्कार (अग्रलेख) ‘काश्मीरचा प्रश्न मोदींनी सोडवला नाही, तर तो कधीच सुटणार नाही’, हा जम्मू-काश्मीरच्या मुख्यमंत्री मेहबूबा मुफ्ती यांना झालेला साक्षात्कार म्हणजे उशिरा सुचलेले शहाणपण आहे. गेल्या पावणेदोन महिन्यांपासून हिंसाचाराच्या ज्वाळांत धगधगणाऱ्या काश्मीरमध्ये तातडीने शांतता प्रस्थापित व्हावी यासाठी दिल्लीमध्ये येऊन पंतप्रधान नरेंद्र मोदी यांच्याशी चर्चा केल्यावर मेहबूबा यांना ही जाणीव झाली. पण सध्या काश्मीरमध्ये निर्माण झालेल्या अंदाधुंदीस स्वत: मेहबूबा यांची धोरणे हेकेखोरपणादेखील कारणीभूत आहे, हे विसरता येत नाही. काश्मीरच्या मुख्यमंत्रिपदी असलेले मुफ्ती मोहंमद सईद यांच्या निधनानंतर भाजपसोबत सरकार बनवायचे की नाही या प्रश्नावरून त्यांच्या कन्या असलेल्या मेहबूबा यांनी जो घोळ घातला त्यातून तेथे दीर्घकाळ निर्नायकी अवस्था होती. काश्मीरमधील आजच्या परिस्थितीची पाळेमुळे बहुतांशाने त्यातच सापडतील. अर्थात, या निमित्ताने का होईना मेहबूबा यांनी स्पष्ट राजकीय भूमिका घेतली वा तशी ती त्यांना घ्यावी लागली हे महत्त्वाचे. काश्मीरमध्ये सध्या निर्माण झालेल्या अंदाधुंदीला पार्श्वभूमी आहे ती बुरहान वानी हा फुटीरतावादी अतिरेकी ठार मारला गेल्याची. हिजबुल मुजाहिदीनचा कमांडर म्हणविणाऱ्या या अतिरेक्याचा सुरक्षा दलाने खात्मा केला आणि काश्मीरमध्ये हिंसाचाराचा आगडोंब उसळला. स्थानिक तरुणांची माथी भडकविणे आणि आततायी कारवायांसाठी त्यांना भरीस घालणे यासाठी अशी सामाजिक अस्वस्थता पोषक असते. हे हेरून काश्मीर खोऱ्यातील फुटीरवादी नेते, त्यांच्या संघटना यांना हाताशी धरत सीमेपलीकडून पाकिस्तानने लगेच या आगीत तेल ओतायला सुरुवात केली. काश्मीरमध्ये ठरावीक पद्धतीने सुरक्षा दलाच्या जवानांवर होणारे हल्ले, दगडफेक, जाळपोळ यासाठी स्थानिक तरुणांच्या टोळ्या चक्क रोजंदारीवर पोसल्या जात असल्याच्या सुरस कथाही उघडकीस येत आहेत. दुसरीकडे या हिंसाचाराला आवर घालण्यासाठी दंगेखोरांविरोधात करण्यात आलेल्या ‘पॅलेट गन’ विरोधात जनमत संघटित करणे, मानवाधिकाराचा मुद्दा उपस्थित करणे, आंतरराष्ट्रीय स्तरावर त्याचा गवगवा करणे यासारखी पावले पाकिस्तानी यंत्रणेने तातडीने उचलली. या सगळ्याच्या परिणामी काश्मीरची स्थिती नियंत्रणात येण्याऐवजी अधिक खस्ता होऊ लागली. केंद्रीय गृहमंत्री राजनाथ सिंह हे या काळात दोन वेळा जातीने काश्मीरला भेट देऊन आले. मेहबूबा यांच्याशी सविस्तर चर्चा करून त्यांनी तेथील स्थितीचा आढावा घेतला आणि काश्मीरमधील जनतेला आश्वस्त करण्याचा प्रयत्न केला. पण एवढे होऊनही स्थिती नियंत्रणात येण्याची फारशी चिन्हे दिसत नाहीत. ही पार्श्वभूमी विचारात घेतल्यास मेहबूबा यांना दिल्लीत येऊन पंतप्रधानांची भेट घेणे का गरजेचे वाटले ते स्पष्ट होते. या भेटीनंतर आता मेहबूबा यांना मोदीच काय तो काश्मीर प्रश्न सोडवू शकतील, असा साक्षात्कार झाला आहे. पण मोदींची ही क्षमता आता-आतापर्यंत त्यांना उमगली नसावी. कारण तसे नसते तर काश्मीरच्या मुख्यमंत्रिपदी विराजमान होण्यापूर्वी भाजपसोबत जायचे की नाही, या मुद्द्यावरून त्यांनी घोळात घोळ घातला नसता. मुफ्ती मोहंमद सईद यांचा गेल्या जानेवारीत अकस्मात मृत्यू झाल्यावर मेहबूबा या पीपल्स डेमोक्रॅटिक पार्टीच्या वतीने आणि भाजपच्या पाठिंब्याने मुख्यमंत्री बनतील, अशी अपेक्षा होती. परंतु पीडीपीने भाजपसोबत जाऊ नये, असा एक मतप्रवाह होता. त्याबाबत अधिकाधिक संदिग्धता निर्माण करत निर्णय घेण्यासाठी मेहबूबा यांनी प्रचंड कालापव्यय केला. मोदींच्या भाजपची साथ घेऊन सत्ता प्रस्थापित केल्यास स्थानिक राजकारणात आपल्याला अडचणी उद््भवतील असा त्यांचा अंदाज होता. परिणामी त्यांनी भाजपच्या पाठिंब्यावरच मुख्यमंत्रिपदी बसण्यासाठी तब्बल तीन महिन्यांचा अवधी घेतला. या काळात तेथे जी निर्नायकी निर्माण झाली त्यामध्ये फुटीरतावाद्यांचे फावले. काश्मीरमधील आताची स्थिती त्याचाच प्रत्यय देणारी आहे. मेहबूबा यांनी त्याच वेळी मोदींबाबत असा विश्वास व्यक्त केला असता आणि त्वरित भाजपसोबत जाण्याचा निर्णय घेतला असता तर कदाचित स्थिती आजच्याएवढी बेकाबू झाली नसती. मोदींच्या भेटीनंतर मेहबूबा यांनी घेतलेली स्पष्ट भूमिका स्वागतार्ह असली तरी परिस्थितीमुळे त्यांना तशी ती घ्यावी लागली आहे, हे निश्चित. ती घेतानाच त्यांनी पाकिस्तानलाही चार शब्द सुनावत काश्मिरात केवळ मूठभर लोक अशा कारवाया करत असल्याचे म्हटले आहे. तसे असेल तर मूठभरांना निपटून काढणे मेहबूबा यांना फारसे अवघड नाही. पण मुळात त्यासाठी इच्छाशक्ती हवी. आपल्याकडे एक वर्ग कायम मने जिंकण्याची वगैरे भाषा करत असतो. पण अशा टोकाच्या परिस्थितीत त्यापेक्षा वास्तवाचे भान बाळगणे अधिक आवश्यक ठरते. मेहबूबा यांना उशिराने का होईना आता ते आले आहे, हेही नसे थोडके.

Collapse of the Steel Frame of Indian Bureaucracy and Modi’s call for Rapid Transformation of the Administrative Systems

Collapse of the Steel Frame of Indian Bureaucracy and Modi’s call for Rapid Transformation of the Administrative Systems lalitshastri / 3 days ago Lalit Shastri Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Deputy Prime Minister of Singapore Tharman Shanmugaratnam at the inauguration ceremony of NITI ‘Transforming India’ Lecture Series, in New Delhi on August 26, 2016. Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Deputy Prime Minister of Singapore Tharman Shanmugaratnam at the inauguration ceremony of NITI ‘Transforming India’ Lecture Series, in New Delhi on August 26, 2016. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said we cannot march through the twenty-first century with the administrative systems of the nineteenth century. As an obvious corollary to this, he is pitching for rapid transformation and not gradual evolution. Modi was delivering today (26 August, 2016) the inaugural address at the NITI ‘Transforming India’ Lecture Series, in New Delhi. Besides Union Ministers and chief ministers, also present on the occasion was Tharman Shanmugaratnam, Deputy Prime Minister of Singapore. Modi had a word of praise for the adminstrative tradition. Without delving into the historic background and the British legacy of the Indian bureaucracy, Modi pointed out how this tradition combines indegenous and external ideas from the past. He was also particular in giving a pat to the bureaucracy. The Prime Minister observed “administrative tradition has served India well in many ways. Above all, it has preserved democracy and federalism, unity and integrity, in a country of glorious diversity.” Stating that these are not small achievements, Modi went on to advocate the need for transformation and said: “transformation of governance cannot happen without a transformation in mindset and a transformation in mindset cannot happen without transformative ideas.” Modi talked of the quality of institutions and ideas and said keeping this in perspective, early last year, a new institution the National Institution for Transforming India or NITI was created to allow a think tank to guide India’s transformation. Modi also reflected on an exercise he has undertaken which has revolved around what he described as “structured” brainstorming sessions with bankers, police officers, Secretaries to Government and others. The ideas emanating from these sessions were being incorporated into policy, said Modi. All this sounds good. Policy is fine but what about the bureaucrats who are one with their political masters who draw power from the Constitution and derive recognition and credibility from what we call the democratic process. How fair is this democratic process could be gauged from the fact that money and muscle power both play a huge role in elections and this gets validated by the demand for public funding of elections. All political parties support this demand and view it as the ultimate solution for tackling the problem of black money. Putting the positives aside, if one were to look closely at the nexus between the vast majority of civil servants and their political masters, which is geared to serve their narrow vested interests and the entire set of factors responsible for the total collapse of the steel frame of Indian bureaucracy, what shall unfold would be a bleak scenario. In the Central Services, those in knowledgeable circles are talking of the quality of induction, which has deteriorated in recent years. A great deal of mediocrity has permeated our bureaucracy. The present situation is perturbing because if you induct officers on the basis of caste it is bound to reflect on the ground. Under the present scenario, the officers, rather than protecting the weaker sections, often tend to go the other way round to perpetuate the caste system and this is what one has been witnessing on the ground. There is another drawback in the system – by introducing the vernacular for the entrance examination, we have removed the level playing field. For example, by taking Sanskrit or a regional language as medium for the entrance examination, a candidate can even secure 150 marks out of 150 and with just 10 or 15 marks in the personality test, can get into the services. Another problem surfacing in a big way is the free for all when it comes to placating the regional aspirations of those seeking to join the Central services. Regional chauvinism is is also pushing merit into the background at the induction stage. There is also a general perception that mostly people are getting attracted to the bureaucracy not by the desire to render service but by power, money and the opportunity to build a clout with the politicians. It is a matter of shame that high incidence of dowry and the feudal roots among the newly inducted officers is still prevalent in states like Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh where the going rate for dowry is more than Rs. 20 million. In the process, the all-India character of the Central services has been demolished. The malaise does not end here as in India the Civil service does not stand as a whole. There is one all India service called the Indian Administrative Service. It can be described as the biggest trade union in the country. In the IAS, everyone knows how they take care of their own Service to the exclusion of all other services, whether it is promotion or empanelment, posting or post-retirement benefits. Sinecures or a position in the Tribunals, Vigilanace Commission, and the newly set up NITI ayog are invariably for the IAS. One will hardly ever find experts from the qualified expert services filling these posts. To further elaborate, an Economic Service man will not be included in the think tank but an IAS without relevant USP would be brought in. The same thing happens in empanelment and the selection of persons who have been empanelled for top-level postings in Government of India. The thumb rule is – If a bureacrat does not pander to the political masters, he gets transferred to remote places and there is always somebody ready and willing to take his or her place. As a tradition, at the grass root level the IAS get the opportunity to maintain a close link with the political class. As Collector or district Magistrate they befriend the local MLA and by the time they rise to become the chief secretary, the same MLA either is the chief minister or a minister at the Centre. In this way they both grow together. The Indian Police Service officers have their own grouse. They have been made subordinate to the IAS for law and order. In many states, there is resistance from the IAS and the Police commissioner system is not being institutionalised because the bureaucrats want to retain all licensing powers,whether it is the arms or the liquor license. In the process the Police officers have surrendered all initiative and are pleased to follow the path of least resistance. Coming to other Central services like the Income Tax, Customs and Excise. Officers from these services have the sword of transfer hanging perpetually over their heads which is highly capricious. There is one bunch of officers that always remains in the Delhi or the Mumbai circuit and gets the cream postings. The general perception is that many of them make a lot of money and take good care of their bosses. The majority of officers on the other hand get kicked around like football all over the countryside and there is no one to listen to their grievance and as a result they are a disgruntled lot. Then we have the Central Service like the Railways where the Rail Unions have been given so much power that the officers find it impossible to enforce their orders. Outsourcing in the Railways is so much politically motivated that there is no quality control whether it is bedrolls or catering. In Indian Railways, the GMs and DRMs are held responsibile when a train derails or runs late but the lineman or others down the line cannot be touched or held accountable. This is another malaise that runs deep. Contrast it with Defence Services and one will get an entirely a different picture. In Defence Services there is no reservation, secondly there is uniformity in recruitment, and thirdly uniform sharing of hardship. By the time one is a full Colonel they do all kinds of field postings. It is not the case with them that if an Army officer is well connected, he would always be posted in the Army headquarters. What is particularly important and significant is that in Defense Services they get promoted only on merit. One will not go beyond the rank of Lt. Colonel or Colonel unless one is exceptionally deserving. Whereas in the IAS the entire batch gets promoted at the same time. In their case, there is no premium on performance and depending on the year of recruitment one sure shot becomes a Secretary. On the other extreme, when it comes to empanelment of officers belonging to other Central Services, the movement of their files is mostly at a trady pace and there are piecemeal queries that take months to travel to and fro. Sources have informed that even the industry lobby plays a role in the appointment of Secretaries. The bleak picture notwithstanding, what cannot be ignored is that there are also good bureaucrats and they have helped in providing a semblance of balance to the administrative machinery. The cancer of corruption also plays havoc with government working. It is only in rare cases when the high and mighty are seen going through the prosecution process. Files seeking permission to prosecute IAS officers under the anti-corruption law, even after the country’s prime investigating agency, the Central Bureau of Investigation, has completed its investigation,are gathering dust and the corrupt have managed to go scot-free. Such a system, when in the parlance of the knowledgeable, IAS stands for “I am safe” Service, should be overhauled completely without wasting any time if India has to catch up with the fast moving world