May 2002 News

Intelligentsia divided over military action against Pak

29 May 2002
The Daily Excelsior
Nishikant Khajuria

Jammu: Notwithstanding the war rhetoric of an average Indian, majority of intellectuals here seem divided over taking a military action against Pakistan despite advocating unanimously for a diplomatic offensive as well as crushing trans-border terrorism with an iron hand. ''Although priority should be a diplomatic offensive but under present circumstances and particularly after Pakistani President General Pervez Musharaf address to the nation, last Monday, it seems that India has no option other than to resort to military action,'' opined a section of thinkers interviewed by the EXCELSIOR today. However, on the other hand others feel that war should be avoided at all costs since the same would not yield any result but only bring destruction to both the countries and thus Indian should concentrate more on diplomatic offensive as well as internal security. Dr Rekha Choudhary, Head of the Department of Political Science in Jammu University stressed that war is no solution to the problem even as it is an established fact that Pakistan is sponsoring and abetting terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir. ''Military action is the last resort and once you use it, you would be left with no option,'' she said and added that by announcing war against Pakistan, India would also loose the global sympathy which it has gained by maintaining restrain even after attack on the Parliament House on December 13 and barbaric Kaluchak incident. Eminent journalist Balraj Puri also dismisses the suggestion of war with Pakistan and says that priority of New Delhi should be to strengthen the internal security, check infiltration from across the border and intensify the diplomatic offensive. ''War is the last option and presently it is foolish to think over it by ignoring other aspects. Government should concentrate on internal security, fencing of border along Pakistan, draw a political strategy for internal dialogue and mobilise world opinion against trans-border terrorism,'' he stressed and lamented that New Delhi has not done enough on these fronts. However, on the other hand, a section of intelligentsia observed that the country is left with no option other than to go for a decisive battle to teach Pakistan a lesson since the nation can not put to be ransom by a country like Pakistan. ''Something is must to be done to hurt Pakistan which seems adamant even after world pressure over her to stop cross-border infiltration of armed terrorists in Indian territory,'' opined Prof M R Puri, former Vice-Chancellor of Jammu University. Admitting that India may loose global sympathy in case of war with Pakistan, Prof Puri insisted that some tactics to hurt them (Pakistan) were must and suggested that India should destroy terrorist training camps in Pak occupied Kashmir. Former Director General of J&K Police Mr M M Khajooria also seems agreed with Prof Puri’s suggestion for military strikes against Pakistan and stresses that the same should be productive. ''It is for political leadership of the country to decide whether to go for a war against Pakistan or not but at personal level, I feel that military strikes against the enemy can be initiated to teach them a lesson,''he told EXCELSIOR. Prof K L Bhatia, HoD of Law faculty in Jammu University was , however, a step forward while advocating for a full-fledged war with the neighbouring country. ''Government must declare war against Pakistan and disintegrate the enemy country so that it can not even think of hurting India,'' he stressed and recalled Lord Krishna’s teaching that ‘war is necessary for peace’. Maintaining that India should have retaliated after December 13 terrorists’ strike on the Parliament House, Prof Bhatia dismissed the hype that world opinion would go against India in case New Delhi declares war. ''It is a fear-psychosis of some so-called intellectuals, I personally feel that after September 11, world opinion is in favour of India and present leadership must exploit this advantage to crush the enemy,'' he added. Prof Varinder Gupta, president of Jammu Mukti Morcha, also advocates for a decisive battle to teach Pakistan a lesson. ''India is left with no option other than to resort to military action since Pakistan does not stop infiltration of armed terrorists and under present circumstances, war is inevitable,'' he opined. Though, Prof Gupta admitted that war is unlikely to bring a solution to the ongoing terrorism and Kashmir issue, he stressed,''we can not left the country to be ransom be a rogue state like Pakistan and thus something is must to be done.'' Dr Nirmal Singh, a Reader in History Department of Jammu University, opined that under present circumstances and particularly after Pakistani President General Pervez Musharraf’s address to the nation on last Monday, India has no alternative other than to go for a war. ''Though priority should be the diplomatic offensive but if diplomacy fails, last resort is war,'' he said and claimed that military action against Pakistan would surely help India to contain terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir. ''Pakistan is the source of terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir and if we kill the source, terrorism will surely die,''he stressed.


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