Referring to the anticipated Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s visit to Pakistan, Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar says, to our great shame, “This only states the clear directions of our foreign policy that we will not let go any desire from India unattended.” That’s accepting India’s hegemony, plain and simple.
As if this was not enough of a somersault of our long-standing position that we will not, at any cost, accept India’s hegemony, Ms Hina had another surprise in store for the people of Pakistan. She remarked that Pakistan would not let the Kashmir dispute prove a roadblock to dealing with India, adding, “Our intention is to solve the Kashmir problem. But let us start with less complicated problems. We will deal with our differences in a different mode.” That was because Islamabad, she felt, now trusted New Delhi more than ever before. Foreign Minister Khar was talking to Hindustan Times at Islamabad on Monday.
There is nothing on the ground to suggest that Pakistan should trust India “more than ever before”. The existing disputes continue to fester and new ones are skilfully devised to make it difficult for Pakistan, already shaken by its unwise participation in the war on terror and a singularly poor leadership in power, to find its feet. India’s footprints on the troubled province of Balochistan are clearly in evidence where it is exploiting the disgruntled elements by giving them all possible inducements – funds, arms and training – to egg them on to maintain the insurgency-like situation. Apparently, New Delhi has, with the help of its friends so unhinged the leadership’s faith in Pakistan’s independence that it has come round to accepting its desires unquestioned.
By downgrading the crucial importance of Kashmir to the country’s survival and prioritising the development of relations with India over it, the rulers have tried to belittle the highly apt description of the country’s Founding Father about Kashmir being the jugular vein of Pakistan. The implications that the squeezing of the jugular vein carry need no emphasis. At the same time, the PPP leadership is also ignoring the resolve of the party’s Founding Father who said that we would fight 1,000 years for Kashmir, which unless settled would cause endless destruction and chaos. The Foreign Minister is, in one stroke, not only condoning the atrocities India’s security forces are committing on the Kashmiris to keep them under subjugation, but also turning a blind eye to stealth of Pakistan’s share of water. The reversal of the stand constitutes a betrayal of the beleaguered people who do not hesitate even to sacrifice their lives to attain freedom from India. It also amounts to reconciling with the fate that the loss of the life-giving water would await Pakistan. That is far too dangerous a prospect for anyone to accept it. The government must review this stand before it is too late to stop the people from violently expressing their outrage. – Nation