Appeasement or Doval doctrine: Time to make up your mind in Kashmir
The situation in Kashmir has gone from bad to worse and the spate of mindless killings that have taken place in the last few days only suggests that there is a need for an urgent policy shift.
One thing is for sure and that neither will the Pakistanis nor the terrorists relent. Talks of peace have failed time and again, with Pakistan only upping the ante with the help of their loyal servants (read separatists).
The past year has been hell, with the number of ceasefire violations going up. These were intentional in nature by Pakistan to help the terrorists infiltrate and crowd the Valley. The number of recruits too shot up and local youth made a beeline into the Hizbul Mujahideen. Further the attacks by groups such as the Lashkar-e-Tayiba and the Jaish-e-Mohammad too shot up. And not to forget the stone pelters for whom amnesty was being sought.
Who is stopping whom?
The security forces have always spoken about the rise in home grown terror. They have been asking for a free hand. They point towards the rise in terrorism in South Kashmir, which incidentally is a stronghold of the PDP. One must admit that the situation in the South of Kashmir has been the worst.
The most number of terror attacks, recruitments and also cases relating to weapon snatching have been reported from this region. The brief from Pakistan is clear and that is there should be no relenting.
The security mechanism in Kashmir in particular is upset with a few decisions that were taken. The decision to grant amnesty to first time stone pelters, according to them was a mis-adventure. It is not as if they would change their mindset and stop pelting stones at us, a senior official part of the security set up says.
Others point out that the BJP has one policy, while the PDP another. This is not helping the cause one bit officials feel. While in 2017, there was a demand for Governor's rule, some felt that this was not the best solution. Bringing in President's rule in Jammu and Kashmir is never a good idea. There is a need for a government and the policy should be a firm one.
Question marks were also raised over the decision to declare a unilateral ceasefire. Not one day has gone without an incident being reported in Kashmir. Between June 1 and June 5, there were 11 grenade attacks. This was a cost-effective way of fomenting terror by the Jaish-e-Mohammad. The intention was to confuse and scare and it did keep the forces on their toes at all times.
It was during this period that Maulana Masood Azhar came up with a grand 'free the prisoners' plan. The Jaish chief, Maulana Masood Azhar who is stationed at a camp in Bhawalpur said that he would ensure that all prisoners lodged in the jails of Kashmir are freed. A fresh Intelligence Bureau report states that the Jaish is readying several terrorists to carry out strikes in Kashmir in a bid to free the prisoners. The camp is being personally overseen by Maulana Azhar, an IB report also states.
No two ways:
"Do not overreact, it will pass off as they cannot sustain beyond a point." This is one of those very famous lines from National Security Advisor Ajit Doval's doctrine for Jammu and Kashmir.
Many had criticised this policy and said that it would not work. Many even said that unless and until the Government spoke with the separatists there would be no solution in Kashmir. The question is are the separatists willing to talk. Are the separatists being allowed to talk by Pakistan. What is Mehbooba Mufti doing to get the separatists to the talking table.
The NIA had launched a major probe against the terror funding involving the separatists. Many are upset with the probe and would want it to end if they were to talk. Would it be right to drop a probe involving crimes just to pacify them?
Doval had pointed out that appeasement is a bane. He said that the biggest problem was the policy of appeasement that was being followed since 1947. He felt that the focus should have been to vacate the Pakistan forces out instead of going to the United Nations.
Also, by accepting Article 370 in the state, it only made the people of Jammu and Kashmir look different and this led to separatism. He also felt that such policies only gave Pakistan the upper hand in setting the agenda. Pakistan decided when to engage India in war or peace, he also had said.
He said that the protests are not due to an uprising by civil society. Instead it is a manufactured and orchestrated move by Pakistan to keep the Valley on the boil.
He even spoke about the clarion calls for protests and stone pelting that would be issued from the mosques.
He even justified the use of force while ascertaining that in most cases the protestors had a murderous approach. Doval, however, emphasised that use of force against innocents was wrong.
The NSA had emphasised on the need to give Pakistan a decisive blow. Pakistan must realise and understand that it cannot take on India. Pakistan has this belief that it can take on India and only through a decisive blow will they understand that they thinking is wrong, Doval said. He also said that with such action, the separatists too would realise who the real power is.