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Oh! When Will They Ever Learn…

The Global Community has, rightly, condemned the dastardly terror attack in northern Indian city of Pulwama on February 14 that has left the entire South Asian nation in mourning, as 40 Indian soldiers were killed in a tragic manner! Within an hour of this act of utter cowardly violence, Pakistan-based terror outfit Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) reportedly claimed responsibility for the attack. Since then, many on the social media are in outrage. Somehow, it is flagrant that whoever had carried out the attack had at the least a bit of local support in Kashmir Valley… Otherwise, it would not have been possible for outsiders to carry out such an attack inside India!

There is, of course, another reason for the rage, rising out of helplessness, amongst the Indians. The number of terror attacks in Kashmir Valley, especially near the Indo-Pak border, in recent times has raised serious questions about the performance of Indian defence and intelligence systems!

National Security Adviser (to the Indian PM) Ajit Doval and the Indian intelligence officers would have to answer many queries in this regard, it seems… There are so many odd questions, like there should not have been more than 30 cars in a convoy (as per the protocol), and there were 78 cars, reportedly… the convoy was carrying around 2,500 soldiers…and they did not have their own security system active (in that unit), again, the Jammu-Srinagar Highway being one of the most high security zones in India, saw, draped in awe that the foreign backed terrorists had carried out the attack and had, more or less, safely returned to their bases… only the suicide bomber there had sacrificed his life…! Questions – like how could they carry 350kg of RDX through such a high security zone, and attack the Indian soldiers without facing much difficulty – linger on…

Well, the term Intelligence, with its varied interpretations and intonations, is not a matter of joke! The lives of more than 1.3 billion Indians depend on these intelligence officers. If their performance is seen to be so poor in a troubled region, like Kashmir, then how can people, living in other parts of India, ever rely on their officers?

It is quite natural (!) that the government will never accept its failure in this regard, as it is always easy to blame the belligerent neighbour after a terror attack… The fact is that one can seldom dream to expect friendly behaviour from an enemy. Condemning the attack, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that the forces behind this act of terrorism and those responsible for it had made a “big mistake”, and would pay a “very heavy price”. Indian Home Minister Rajnath Singh, too, blamed Pakistan for the attack, stating that JeM founder Maulana Masood Azhar has been given the freedom to target India… Of course, the neighbouring country has always encouraged (and used) terror outfits to destabilise India… It is nothing new. What is important in this hour is to take precautionary measures, it may be conjectured…

Some experts believe that the incident in Pulwama will certainly help the Indian government (or the ruling party or the ruling coalition) plan to reap a huge political mileage ahead of the impending General Elections! The terror attack has already triggered an anti-Pakistan wave in the Indian media… The social media, too, are flooded with the sentiment of Nationalism. According to some of the experts, the scenario might allow the government to keep the mistakes it had made in the last five years away from the searching eyes for the time being, and also to win the election!

A number of Indians have advised their government to declare a war against Pakistan and to take revenge! However, retired officer of the Indian Army Vikram Oberoi has warned these people, saying: “I’m seeing so many people calling for war over the tragic slaughter of our brave soldiers. Being from an Army family and have experienced what a war feels like to a child living next to the border, I say you don’t know what you are talking about. An Army is not an impersonal machine that is switched on to destroy your enemies. It comprises of fathers and brothers and mothers and sisters.

Vikram Oberoi

Oberoi stressed: “Your anger in the comfort of your living room is not enough reason to throw our brave men into the line of fire. And most importantly, the Army knows its job. It knows when to attack and exactly how devastatingly! Please restrict your expert comments to the Indian Premier League cricket tournament. Thanks…!

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