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OpinionsIndia-Pakistan situation is live and tense: Stop talking

India-Pakistan situation is live and tense: Stop talking

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India-Pakistan situation is live and tense: Stop talking

Ajey Lele
Do not discuss and divulge information, make irresponsible statements or ask dim-witted questions.

The Uri massacre happened on September 18, 2016. India's armed forces undertook surgical strikes on September 28/29 along the Line of Control (LoC). Every political party praised the Prime Minister for the bold step he took.

For some time it appeared that Indian democracy had finally matured, but not anymore. Dim-witted questions are getting raised about the surgical strikes. Some are not liking the fact that the government of the day is walking away with all the credit. Some are claiming we also conducted similar operations when we were in power.

All in all, there is a race among political parties, the media and the so-called political and strategic analyst community to discuss/revel in such operations.

The entire situation reminds of the old advertisement (1980/90s) of Rin washing detergent: Bhala uski kameez meri kameez se safed kaise? (How come his shirt is whiter than mine?)

Today, the race is either for taking credit for the surgical strikes or to ensure that others do not get the credit. Obviously, PM Narendra Modi and his team deserve credit for thinking boldly and the armed forces for perfect execution.

Such operations should either be conducted covertly and, if politico-strategic messaging has to be undertaken, it is important to stay guarded about it once the announcement has been made.

India should not lose the plot owing to over-publicity. This may force Pakistan to act irrationally just to demonstrate that it is not scared (post the surgical strikes, attacks have taken place in ).

And if the strike operation was just the first step for Indian policymakers, then any over-publicity could create a hindrance in launching say surgical strikes 2.0. As correctly put by the Chief of Air Staff, the situation is still “live”.

It is wrong to openly discuss India's and diplomatic strategies at this point of time. Knowledgeable people have already started openly debating many issues connected with such operations. Hold on guys, even government files and records of confidential documents are declassified after 30 years – and you are not ready to wait for even 30 minutes!

The electronic media is covering the entire incident like a reality show. This is the same media which had created pressure on the government and opposition parties during the IC814 Kandahar hijack (1999). They ended up creating public opinion which eventually forced the government to buckle.

During the Mumbai terror attacks (26/11), the media divulged critical information when the attack was still on, and today too it is unnecessarily going for overkill without realising what impact its enthusiasm and demand for TRPs would have.

Twitter is another domain where many irresponsible statements are being made. Unfortunately, almost everyone – people in power, people who were in power, retired diplomats, retired military officers, and of course mediapersons – are expressing opinion on this issues (like damn it, it's my democratic duty!) without realising the side-effects.

Pakistan has also made atrocious claims, such as the attacks in Uri and Pathankot were India's doing, Ajmal Qasab was not its citizen, it was not aware that Osama bin Laden was staying in the country, neither did it know about don Dawood Ibrahim, etc.

Now, the same Pakistan is challenging the veracity of India's surgical strikes. Toeing the neighbouring country's line, some in India also want the government to counter Pakistan's propaganda!

Demands like this are unnecessary mudding the waters. It is becoming obvious that the opposition stood behind the government because it would have been politically unwise not to do so.

The questions which are getting raised now clearly indicate they are trying to check whether any alternative viewpoint stands a chance at getting political mileage.

Indian electronic media, probably, has never been and would never be unbiased. The media moguls are of the opinion that their job is not to give the “news” but to give “views”. They do not search for the news but only believe in creating a sensation.

, , cricket and India-Pakistan/China relations are their favourite subjects since they guarantee TRPs. Since Bollywood guarantees more viewership and on occasion some controversy, media houses are even getting expert opinion from Bollywood stars on the India-Pakistan story!

Surprisingly, today high-ranking retired officers from the armed forces are spilling information about actions taken during their service. Normally, no two military operations can be the same because circumstances for the conduct of such operations would differ. Hence, it is improper to compare previous operations with the present surgical strikes, at least now. Please leave something for future historians.

For some retired diplomats and generals, television is probably a medium to attract attention of the power brokers, maybe to get some positions in the government. But, this is not the time to take political positions.

Please remember that the situation is still “live”. Please do not discuss and divulge anything about the past, present or possible future which could hamper our strategic objectives.

India has come this far because of your efforts, when you were holding high offices, but remember even as veterans you should be responsible.

Northlines
Northlines
The Northlines is an independent source on the Web for news, facts and figures relating to Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh and its neighbourhood.

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