The latest attack on India by fidayeen groups has pushed India-Pakistan relations to the edge again. As India takes up the issue of Pakistan-sponsored terrorism and the neighbour’s support to terror nurseries on the global platform, another attack on the India, particularly on the armed forces, is clearly testing New Delhi’s patience. India will need to relook its security policy if such incidents are to be stopped.
On Sunday, a four-man Fidayeen squad, suspected to be from Pakistan-based terror outfit Jaish-e-Mohammad, attacked an Indian infantry installation in Jammu and Kashmir’s Uri town, barely a few kms from the LoC. In one of the worst attacks against the Indian Army, 17 army jawans were killed and 19 others left critically injured. The four attackers were killed by the armed forces. Preliminary investigation by the security forces shows their weapons to bear Pakistani markings, again raising the issue of Pakistan’s open support to terrorists for carrying out attacks on India soil apparently to destabilise the security situation in the Kashmir valley.
Fidayeen attackers have increasingly begun targeting Indian security forces and their installations to disrupt any progress towards peace in Jammu and Kashmir.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi said he intended to bring the perpetrators to justice while Home Minister Rajnath Singh was quick to show disappointment with “terrorist state” Pakistan questioning the cross-border terrorism that it appears to be inflicting on India. Singh called Pakistan a “terrorist state” which should be “identified and isolated” as such. “There are definite and conclusive indications that the perpetrators of Uri attack were highly trained, heavily armed and specially equipped. I am deeply disappointed with Pakistan’s continued and direct support to terrorism and terrorist groups,” he said.
The minister is well within his rights to question Pakistan’s motives and its role in spreading unrest and terrorism in India. In a matter of nine months, this is the second direct strike on a defence establishment in Kashmir. Another attack by Pakistani terror actors took place in June this year when a CRPF convoy was attacked leading to the death of eight personnel. These have also followed an extended spell of attacks on army convoys and military bunkers along with multiple ceasefire violations along the border, often to facilitate infiltration into India. India could have escalated these strikes on its soil to a war-like situation, but it chose not to act in haste. However, Pakistan has taken India’s stance as granted and appears to be pushing its luck.
As Prime Minister Narendra Modi raises the issue of Pakistan’s atrocities in Balochistan and Pakistan occupied Kashmir, there seems to be a clear ploy to divert the attention towards Kashmir. Time and again, India has chosen to keep Pakistan in the process and insisted that it arrests and neutralises terrorists in its territory. However, the neighbour has harboured terrorists found guilty of carrying out mass killings in India.
Pakistan seems to believe India won’t act strongly and give a befitting reply to the aggressors. However, it seems New Delhi’s patience might just be running out.