icularly the Muslims in Occupied Kashmir and the Dalit in South India, the other fronts are Pakistan and China. And at those three fronts he is prepared to go any length. In Occupied Kashmir, where he says he is fighting a “dirty war,” he is ready to be even dirtier.
General Rawat has not only stoutly defended Major Gogoi’s act of tying a Kashmiri to the front of his army jeep as human shield, he has rewarded the officer. A professional soldier going that length to please the growing Hindutva mindset, what more depth the much-touted Indian secularism could sink in. That an army should acquire the mentality of street thugs is indeed a challenge to India’s secular political parties and independent intelligentsia. If Occupied Kashmir is an “integral part” of India, as the Modi government never tires of claiming, how then are the protestors there are being blinded and butchered so cruelly.
And yet victory is nowhere in sight of General Bipin Rawat and his foot soldier Major Gogoi. That war on the half-front the general is fighting is far from being over; in fact, the resilience the Kashmiris have exhibited in facing one of the world’s largest army tends to inspire quite a few other insurgencies in India’s northeast and south. Narendra Modi won the last election by championing the cause of Indian nationalism, but having won at the hustings he has tried to impose his BJP brand of Hindutva. Will that kind of treachery work again?
The other two fronts at which General Rawat is ready to go to war are Pakistan and China. How close is India to a full-fledged clash with Pakistan, it would be hazardous to speculate. However, the spokesman for the Foreign Office says “India could be seeking conflict with Pakistan.” There is a steady rise in tension along the Line of Control, with Indian forces having brought in heavy artillery and targeting civilian population centres in Azad Kashmir. Its belligerent approach to defusing the tension was in full play at the recent hotline contact between the area commanders of the two sides. But should India commit any “strategic miscalculation” in furtherance of its Cold Start doctrine, Pakistan has promised a befitting response.
As to what motivates India to raise tension on the Line of Control, there are two discernable reasons. One, by violating the ceasefire agreement India wants to divert world attention away from its extremely brutal handling of the Kashmiris’ intifada. In that it has succeeded to some extents, there is no denunciation of Indian atrocities on the part of the international community, particularly the United Nations. Two, by keeping the Kashmir cauldron boiling New Delhi expresses its opposition to the China Pakistan Economic Corridor as it passes through what it says is Indian territory. But that argument has no buyers; while that territory is part of Pakistan the Chinese leadership has rejected the Indian claim by asserting that CPEC has nothing to do with the question of sovereignty. But in case New Delhi really wants war with Pakistan it would find Pakistan waiting for that. And unlike the previous three wars between Pakistan and India it would be a nuclear Armageddon.