May 1999 News

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India won't permit Pak to trigger exodus of Hindus

1 May 1999
Daily Excelsior

Confirming the interception of as many as half a dozen messages, in the past two weeks, that wanted anti-India subversives and terrorists to resort to selective killing of civilians, mostly Hindus, in the districts of Udhampur, Doda, Rajouri and Poonch, a top Government source has divulged that some captured militants and infiltrators, currently being interrogated at an unidentified place outside J&K, have dished out "valuable'' information about the Pakistani gameplan to engineer changes in the demographic character of Jammu province in a phased manner.

"We were to organise bloody incidents in several areas of Jammu region through bombs and bullets so as to ensure early exodus of majority of Hindus from Doda, Rajouri, Poonch and Udhampur districts,'' the captured "terror merchants'' from across the border have revealed. According to the source, high-level official consultations that following certain sensational discosures made by the captured infiltrators finally resulted in dashing off a message to Islamabad cautioning the Pakistani Government not to provoke "peace-loving Indians in J&K to hit back.''

Significant feature of the message, it was pointed out, related to New Delhi's "determination to prevent Pakistan and her patriots from disrupting or disturbing the demographic character of any lane and bylane in the province of Jammu.'' New Delhi gave its bit of mind to Islamabad at a time when it was claimed that Pakistan's nuclear programme has registered such significant advances as to neutralise India's military advantage.

Stating that the latest news to hit the headlines from across the border is that Pakistan is planning another missile test, the sources said that even as all of this undoubtedly "places a new dimension on threat perceptions'' from Pakistan, India continued to have superiority over Pakistan.

New Delhi seems confident at the moment that the danger posed by the acquisition of the Ghauri by Pakistan can be countered. But the fact remains, the source acknowledged, that the enhanced missile activity in the region "is a serious development which ought to receive priority attention from Indian defence planners.''

This assessment has received indirect confirmation from Democrat US Congressman, Mr Frank Pallone, who has already argued in the House of Representatives that the test-firing of the Ghauri posed significant security threats not only to India but to all of Pakistan's neighbours. Mr Pallone has also noted that while the Clinton Administration has consistently been underplaying Sino-Pakistan nuclear collusion, the sanctions against the North Korean company and the Pakistan 'laboratories were too modest to discourage the trend towards destabilisation and weapons proliferation.

In an unpublished document, the Government of India has conceded that while the proliferation element is disturbing enough for India, what is"worse is that the country has to contend with destabilisation through terrorism on an increasing seals.'' The distressing aspect of the recent step-up in subversive violence in Jammu and Kashmir is that the militants and terrorists "continue to be under the orders of their sponsors (Pakistan) to resort to selective killing of people, mostly Hindus in the Poonch, Rajouri, Udhampur and Doda areas.''

In the last two months, between 500 and 900 militants and not less than 200 trained foreign mercenaries have sneaked into Poonch district alone. Union Home Ministry sources disclosed that a new pattern is emerging in the activities of Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI), which is now concentrating on exploiting the communal situation and religious passions of the people in areas which were hitherto unaffected by the communal virus.

The strategy seems part of the larger plan to spread Islamic fundamentalism and widen the Hindu-Muslim divide. Tentacles of ISI have reached "safe areas'' in all parts of the country where "sleeping'' militants are being re-activated for subversive activities. Recent evidence has confirmed that batches of mercenaries are brainwashed with stories of alleged atrocities against Muslims in Jammu and Kashmir and then sent across the border to carry out jihad against India.

Thus, with the Pakistani armed forces acquiring nuclear weapons on the one side and the stepped-up subversive intrusion into the country, particularly J&K by the ISI on the other, and with China's intentions remaining suspect, threats to India's security have suddenly accumulated.

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