-By Sanjay Jha
I think this inane scrutiny of the Indo-Pak Egypt joint statement has gone too far really. Of course, there is no denying that given the highly sensitive nature of our political relationship with our fidgety and unpredictable neighbor, we have to not just be suitably calibrated , but justifiably circumspect. Having made that rational concession, PM Manmohan Singh has rightly stated that a mutual dialogue is the only prudent way forward. As experience has taught us, one joint statement , whichever way you wish to interpret it, is hardly the cast-in-stone commandment that will resolve the umbrageous nature of Indo-Pak sensitivities. Despite the fact that former PM Atal Behari Vajpayee made such a famous bus trip and several called that a historic breakthrough , what followed? Kargil. In the light of the latter experience, we should learn to take the apparent twist of authentic facts by Pakistan on Balochistan with a pinch of both salt and pepper.
Let me put it rather bluntly, there are only two bare facts; either we are genuinely interfering in Balochistan or we are not. If we are, then Pakistan is wholly justified in raking it up as a natural defense tactic for their nasty attacks on our own soil. Any country would do that and if we are surprised by that we are clearly living in a fool’s paradise. If we are not, we are not, and there is no way in heaven that Pakistan can just fabricate a yarn without damaging what little remains of it’s fast-eroding credibility. So what are we getting so paranoid about? On the contrary, India should expose Pakistan’s bluff and ensure that it pays a huge diplomatic price for such casual gaucherie.
If Pakistan is innocent until proven guilty ( and this despite undeniable evidence of several ghastly intrusions and 26/11 etc ) , then I think India need not break a sweat on Islamabad’s political ploys. We should back the Indian Prime Minister at this moment instead of unnecessarily hounding him on the subject.
It is time we showed some patriotic muscle instead of scoring cheap points which actually only ends up helping our sniggering friends across the border.