India possesses “sufficient evidence” that proves two Indian soldiers were killed and their bodies mutilated on May 1 in Krishna Ghati Sector of Kashmir by Pakistani army personnel, according to Gopal Baglay, spokesperson, Ministry of External Affairs (MEA). India has also conveyed this to Pakistan through Islamabad’s High Commissioner to Delhi Abdul Basit. However, a question here arises — what next?
The May 1 incident happened a day after Pakistan Army chief Qamar Javed Bajwa interacted with his soldiers across the Line of Control (LoC) in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) and a few weeks after a Pakistani military court sentenced to death a former Indian Navy officer, Kuldbhushan Jadhav, who was kidnapped from Iran, brought to Pakistan and falsely implicated on espionage charges. These two incidents in the span of a few weeks show Pakistan is least interested in having a normal relation with India.
While New Delhi and Islamabad were already having a tensed time since the sentencing of Jadhav, Pakistan didn’t shy away from daring India at the LoC on May 1.
In the last one year, New Delhi has issued strong statements against Pakistan, even carried out surgical strikes on terror launch pads in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir and tried to diplomatically isolate Pakistan globally for sponsoring terrorism. But Pakistan doesn’t seem to be affected by India’s efforts or bothered about the loss of diplomatic ties with New Delhi. Instead, it continues to operate on several levels to either dare, humiliate or outsmart India, as per its own understanding.
First, Pakistan is openly fuelling the separatist movement in Kashmir and its leaders. Islamabad’s leaders, including PM Nawaz Sharif, do not leave a single opportunity to voice their Kashmir and anti-India propaganda from any stage of the world. Second, with its economic ties with China and overtures to countries like Russia and the US, Islamabad doesn’t even seem to acknowledge or respect India as a powerful country in the region. Third, ceasefire violation by Pakistan Army has become a norm on the LOC. Fourth, Pakistan continues to send terrorists to India and support those in Kashmir etc.
International diplomacy is full of ironies and double standards. Even in the age of global interdependencies, countries that can stand on its own feet for the sake of its pride and take tough decisions, are more powerful and respected across the world — be it the US, China or Russia. No self-respecting country would take the mutilation of the bodies of its soldiers, or of a citizen being hanged by another country on fake charges, silently.
So, what next? This question may be for Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led Union government to decide, but India cannot strategically afford to ignore Pakistani tricks for long.