India’s Narrative On J&K Is Hyperbolic

Editorials have appeared in two leading Delhi newspapers today (here and here) urging the government to present a credible, appealing diplomatic narrative on the J&K developments.

The Indian narrative so far is largely focused on the domestic audience. It has gone to ridiculous extents by projecting that the situation is actually quite “normal” in J&K. Pictures of National Security Advisor Ajit Doval savouring (mutton) biryani with Kashmiri Muslims on a street corner in Srinagar have been doing the rounds. (Indeed, it was a charade to hoodwink the public.)

Crude propaganda won’t win hearts and minds. A narrative has to be crafted rationally. It’s common knowledge that there is little  acceptance of the government move among Kashmiri Muslims.

When it comes to the external projection of the Indian narrative, given the fact that India’s case is flying in the face of international law and the UN Charter, the government must be capable of sensitivity.

The government would have seized the initiative at the diplomatic level if only soon after Home Minister Amit Shah piloted through both houses of the parliament at breakneck speed the legislation on abrogating Article 370 of the constitution, External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar had stood up and made a suo moto statement offering to discuss all differences with Pakistan bilaterally in a comprehensive dialogue in the best interests of regional security, peace and stability.

Of course, such a momentous initiative would have required imagination, far-sightedness and wisdom — and, most important, political courage at the leadership level. The shortfall in statecraft and diplomacy is appalling.

A self-righteous attitude will not do. Take EAM’s demarche with the Chinese counterpart State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi in Beijing on Monday. The MEA readout spells out the Indian stance on the following lines:

One, constitutional amendment is an “internal matter for India” and the “sole prerogative of the country”.

Two, abrogation of J&K’s special status (including changes in Ladakh’s status) is aimed at “promoting better governance and socio-economic development”.

Three, the government move has “no implication for either the external boundaries of India or the Line of Actual Control” with China.

Wang Yi in talks with S. Jaishankar
China’s State Councilor & Foreign Minister Wang Yi in talks with India’s Minister of External Affairs S. Jaishankar, Beijing, Aug. 12, 2019.

And, four, India is “not raising any additional territorial claims.”

Incredibly enough, this was how EAM brushed aside China’s “serious concern over the recent escalation of turmoil in Kashmir” –that any unilateral action that may complicate the situation in Kashmir should not be taken; that Kashmir issue is a dispute born out of the region’s colonial history and should be properly handled in a peaceful way in line with the UN Charter, relevant resolutions of the UN Security Council and bilateral agreements between Pakistan and India”; and, its expectation that “India will play a constructive role in regional peace and stability.” (here, here, here, here and here

EAM’s rejoinder may have some resonance domestically within India as a macho attitude, but it will only arouse mirth and derision abroad — even in the diplomatic enclave in Chanakyapuri area.

No P5 member country has officially voiced support for India. There is no shred of evidence that the Russian Foreign Ministry voiced support for India on the issue — not on the FO website; neither in a Tass or Novosti report nor even in the irrepressible Russian press. Some fly-by-night operator well-versed with the Indian rope trick, apparently spread fake news on a Friday night and it became “breaking news” in India by next morning. Pathetic.

Simply put, the Indian stance articulated by EAM is fundamentally flawed in logic and can only be counter-productive, as it shuts the door on discussion. The point is, Kashmir is an international dispute and India unilaterally changed J&K’s “status” in violation of the relevant UN resolutions. No one will accept India’s claim that it is an “internal matter”.

The world opinion accepts that Pakistan is party to Kashmir dispute. It is beside the point that India is not redrawing boundaries. And it’s gratuitous to say there is “no implication” for the LOC or the LOAC. If things were that simple, why couldn’t Modi government stomach the CPEC passing through Gilgit-Baltistan? We screamed, “territorial sovereignty” blah, blah.

The world opinion will only believe that Delhi’s real intention is to change the demographic balance so that there shall be no Muslim-majority entity henceforth within the Indian Union.

If such unilateral acts in modern history are as simple as “internal matter”, why is no one recognising Russia’s annexation of Crimea? Why is Beijing so sensitive on intervention in Hong Kong? Why is the US insisting on “freedom of navigation” in South China Sea? Why is the US raising eyebrow over the North Sea Route and the Arctic? What is wrong with Iran’s claim over Persian Gulf as sovereign territory? What prevents Sri Lanka’s Mahinda Rajapaksa from solving the Tamil problem in similar fashion (as he hinted last week)?

The Modi government will be creating a long-term, intractable problem for India for generations to come by adopting such an ostrich approach. Analysts have pointed out (here and here) that the change in Ladakh’s status makes India-China border dispute incredibly complicated and all but unsolvable. India’s international standing can get seriously damaged.   

The only way to address the conundrum is to propose to Pakistan that India is ready to discuss these differences. Fortuitously, Pakistan also faces the unhappy situation that no one in the international community is showing willingness to stand up and be counted as its partner to push back at India.

The bottom line is that India enjoys wide acceptance for its insistence on bilateralism to resolve differences with Pakistan. India should now tactfully exercise this privilege. It is always possible to hold out informal assurances that there’ll be no “colonisation” of Kashmir valley. After all, we have such safeguards for many regions of India.   

Demonstrators in Srinagar
Demonstrators shout slogans outside a hospital emergency unit during protest against lockdown, Srinagar, August 9, 2019

The window of opportunity shall not remain open for long. From all accounts, the ground situation in J&K is explosive and the grating roar of human misery is approaching. PM Imran Khan’s prognosis on another Pulwama is not off the mark. For Delhi to build a new architecture in J&K out of the debris all around, a dialogue with Pakistan is critically important.

Source: The Indian Punchline

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6 Comments
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  4. Muzaffar Akram

    Mr. BHADRAKUMAR thank you for a great article. I loved the way you have explained to the readers what the reality is all about. Your excellent statement “The point is, Kashmir is an international dispute and India unilaterally changed J&K’s “status” in violation of the relevant UN resolutions. No one will accept India’s claim that it is an “internal matter” is very difficult to understand for Indian common man. Politicians use this uneducated position of the common masses for their own vested political interests. The leaders do not initiate debates on this topic. especially now when bilateralism is dead due to the abrogation of 370. Kashmiris will be more receptive of Indian leaders if they are given a chance to a logical debate.

  5. samir sardana

    What about the Kashmir Genocide ?

    The Ruling political dispensation of India (Hindoosthan) is a front of the RSS (a quasi wanna be Nazi party).The RSS in its documented history and intellectual posits has admired and co-opted and co-owned Hitler – not merely as a Role Model – but as a Kalki Avatar – or an Avatar of Vishnoo – the Hindoo God !

    The SS part of the RSS is a lift from the Nazi SS and the “R” stands for “Rats”

    The RSS is infested by the vermins of the Brahmin/Bania/Kayastha triad – which represent the priestly and trading classes of Hindoosthan who never fought a war for their nation – but incited the same and also carried out the largest unknown genocide in History – that of the Buddhists

    The Bhagwad Gita JUSTIFIES genocide, w/o remorse,guilt and WITH DIVINE SANCTION.The Indian Military and Para Military,is a race of criminal mercenaries called Kshatriyas – who were the offspring of rapes by the Huns,Mongols,Sakas, Scythians,Persians, Parthinians,Greeks 1500-2000 years ago.They were discarded by their races and interbred and were treated as outcastes for centuries – until the Brahmins co-opted them as criminal mass murderers (around 1000 years ag Party – and who are now in Kashmir !

    Nazis are on record JUSTIFYING their actions based on the thesis of the Bhagwad Gita explained in this note.

    History Records that the Nazis were ALSO inspired by the Gita, per se,dindooohindoo

    Why the “Nazis and Hitler and Himmler”, love the Gita

    “Dindoo Hindoo Bindoo Gandoos” consider “Hitler to be a Vishnoo Avatar”

    When Krishna the Bhagvat was fed up rying to explain to “Arjuna the – why he “needed to exterminate his foes” – this was the “last attempt” in the 18th Chapter of the Gita – the logic is as under :

    Lumen Naturale 1 – There are “5 precedents to sense-perception and action”

    मूल श्लोकः
    शरीरवाङ्मनोभिर्यत्कर्म प्रारभते नरः।
    न्याय्यं वा विपरीतं वा पञ्चैते तस्य हेतवः।।18.15।।

    18.14 The locus as also the agent, the different kinds of organs, the many and distinct activities, and, the “divine is here the fifth”.

    Lumen Naturale 2 – There “5 are causes of all action” and are “independent of the mind and body dualism” of Descartes and “also the Soul “!

    मूल श्लोकः
    यस्य नाहंकृतो भावो बुद्धिर्यस्य न लिप्यते।
    हत्वापि स इमाँल्लोकान्न हन्ति न निबध्यते।।18.17।।

    18.15 For whatever action a man undertakes by his body, speech and mind, whether right or wrong,i.e., enjoined or forbidden by the Sastras, “the following five”, are its causes:

    Lumen Naturale Heart – Hence,you can “kill,murder and rape” – provided it is done with “no ego and no feelings “- for it is the “Act of the Divine” ! Just like the Nazis ! “Heil Krishna,the Bhagwat “!

    मूल श्लोकः
    अधिष्ठानं तथा कर्ता करणं च पृथग्विधम्।
    विविधाश्च पृथक्चेष्टा दैवं चैवात्र पञ्चमम्।।18.14।।

    18.17 He who has not the “feeling of egoism”, whose intellect is not tainted, he does not kill, nor does he become bound-“even by killing these creatures” !

  6. samir sardana

    The India – Pakistan war starts from AT LEAST 2000 years ago

    Sample what the Mahabharata says about the Pakistanis (id.est., the Country of the 5 rivers – as the phrase is used in the Mahabharata)

    It captures the transcendent permanence of hate – evisceral hate ! There is no point in the Pakistanis talking to the Indians !

    Pakistan has to gravitate to PRC,Persia.Turkey and Russia – and that is also prophecised by several seers

    These are the verses of the Mahabharata which NIL the LOVELORN INDIA-PAKISTAN BROTHERHOOD SYNDROME !

    The Mahabharata, Book 8: Karna Parva: Section 45

    Fie on the Arattas and the people of the “country of the five rivers”.

    The Mahabharata, Book 8: Karna Parva: Section 45

    This cannot be said of the Madrakas and the “crooked-hearted race” that resides in the “country of the five rivers”

    The Mahabharata, Book 8: Karna Parva: Section 45

    In days of yore, when the eternal religion was reverenced in all countries,the Grandsire, observing the “practices of the country of the five rivers, cried fie on them”

    The Mahabharata, Book 8: Karna Parva: Section 44

    There where the five rivers flow just after issuing from the mountains, there among the Aratta-Vahikas, no respectable person should dwell even for two days. They are “not creatures created by the Creator”

    The Mahabharata, Book 8: Karna Parva: Section 44

    There where forests of Pilus stand,and those five rivers flow, viz., the Satadru, the Vipasa, the Iravati, the Candrabhaga, and the Vitasa and which have the Sindhu for their sixth, there in those regions removed from the Himavat, are the countries called by the name of the Arattas. Those regions are “without virtue and religion”. No one should go thither.

    The tragedy of Hindooosthan is that The DNA and History of the “so called Hindoo nation”, lies in Pakistan ! !! dindooohindoo

    Sakastan, is in Pakistan
    Saraswati, is in Pakistan
    Porus, was a Pakistani
    The land of the 7 rivers ,of the Mahabharata, is Pakistan
    The People who stopped and killed Alexander, are in Pakistan
    The IVC, is in Pakistan
    Mohenjo, is in Pakistan
    The key to the fraud of Hindoo History, is in Pakistan
    RAMA WAS BORN IN PAKISTAN
    The MOST Sacred Sikh Shrines are in Pakistan
    Mardana who TUTORED Nanak was a Pakistani
    The Chola of Nanak is in Pakistan
    The only nation in the world, formed only on the basis of religion, and not named in any Abrahamic faith = Pakistan (Israel is named)

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