New Delhi: The battle against terrorism should not serve narrow political ends, the CPI-M has said, adding it is doubtful if military action will serve the strategic purpose of curbing terrorism emanating from Pakistan.
“The fight against terrorism cannot serve narrow political ends,” said an editorial in the CPI-M journal “People’s Democracy”.
The Communist Party of India-Marxist described the India-Pakistan situation as “dangerous” and said that “immediate steps should be taken to de-escalate the confrontation”.
The editorial said the Indian air strike on a Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) camp in Balakot in Pakistan was conducted to send an effective message that New Delhi will not tolerate terrorist attacks such as in Pulwama which killed 40 CRPF troopers.
“The extent of the success of the operation, in terms of destroying the militant base, is yet to be established,” it said.
“The reputed international defense monitoring media agency, Jane’s Information Group, has termed the claims about the operation’s success as ‘speculative’. However, the fact that the Indian Air Force struck deep inside Pakistan territory itself represented a significant military intervention, since it crossed the boundaries of Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.”
Then Pakistan retaliated, and an Indian pilot was captured by Pakistanis.
“Thus, there has been a quick escalation at the military level between the two countries. This is a dangerous situation and immediate steps should be taken to de-escalate the confrontation…
“It is now up to India to continue with the efforts on the diplomatic and political front to put further pressure on Pakistan to act against the JeM, Lashkar-e-Taiba and other extremist groups.”
The editorial pointed out that apart from the incentive of electoral gains for the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), “it is doubtful whether military action will serve the strategic purpose of curbing terrorism from across the border”.
“The behavior of the Prime Minister and BJP President Amit Shah, in the aftermath of the Pulwama attack, only served to illustrate the point…
“Even after the aerial strike, Amit Shah promptly declared in a public meeting that this was possible because there was a BJP government and not a ‘gathbandhan’ government.”
The editorial said the Modi government’s basic failure in Jammu and Kashmir was the root cause for the violence and terrorism there.
“The past nearly five years have been barren of any political initiative to begin a political process for arriving at a settlement of the Kashmir issue.
“On the contrary, the BJP played a disruptive role in feeding communal sentiments and raking up sensitive issues such as Article 35A. The heavy hand and the crackdown undertaken after the Pulwama attack will only further worsen the situation.”