The article originally appeared on India Today. 

Despite Afghanistan’s strong reservations, Pakistan has started the fencing work along the whole Pakistan-Afghanistan border or Durand Line. According to Maj Gen Asif Ghafoor, DG, Inter-Service Public Relations and Pak army spokesperson, the work is part of Operation Radd ul Fasaad, Pak army’s countrywide anti-terror operation and has been ordered by Pak army chief Gen Qamar Javed Bahwa.

The whole work will be completed in two phases with high infiltration areas like Bajaur, Mohmand and Khyber Agencies are being taken in the first phase. According to his Facebook post, besides building up the fence, the Pak army is also new posts and forts to further beef up the security measures.

Nothing looks wrong with it. It is, in fact, within a sovereign country’s rights to do all to secure its borders. But it is not so. The border between Afghanistan and Pakistan, known as Durand Line, is disputed and Afghanistan has vowed to never recognize it. Durand Line, drawn by Britain in 1893, is 2460 Kms long and arbitrarily divides the geographical areas inhabited by Pashtun and Baloch communities. Afghanistan contends that the validity of the British era document that imposed the Durand Line on Afghanistan expired with the collapse of the British empire from the sub-continent in 1947.

Earlier this year, when Pakistan had closed its border with Afghanistan citing terrorists’ infiltration, Afghanistan’s former president Hamid Karzai had hit back using strong words, “the Government of Pakistan had no legal authority to dictate terms on the Durand line.” He added that “while we wish freedom for the people of FATA from FCR and other repressive measures, we remind the Government of Pakistan that Afghanistan hasn’t and will not recognize the Durand Line.” Federally Administered Tribal Areas or FATA is Pakistan’s north-western province that borders with Afghanistan. FATA was seen as a region beyond Pakistan’s control which regulates it now through repressive special laws known as the Frontier Crimes Regulations (FCR) and has announced to merge it with Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province.



The article originally appeared on India Today.

Here it is bit modified.

Pakistan was certainly a better team yesterday when it defeated India in the Champions Trophy finals lifting the cup but the way Pakistan army is trying to cash this victory to further its anti-India propaganda is only laughable.

It seems the whole military establishment of Pakistan got a desperate lease of life to look down upon India after continuous humiliation from India, be it the Surgical Strikes last year or India demolishing Pak army bunkers this year or India’s continued domination on the border with Pakistan.

Tweets by Maj Gen Asif Ghafoor, DG, Inter-Service Public Relations and Pak army spokesperson, after Pakistan’s win sounded like Pakistan had won some war against India with its Chief of Army Staff (COAS) Qamar Javed Bajwa, it naval chief and its soldiers cheering up Pakistan’s win.

To beef up his propaganda rhetoric, Maj Ghafoor added a video of celebrations in Srinagar on Pakistan’s win and didn’t forget to add happy images from Baluchistan saying “to whom it may concern”. Lay off!”

He used Pakistan’s cricketing win over India to repeat the worn out line “united we shall defend Pak against all threats our enemies hatch” with images of “valiant soldiers of Pakistan congratulating Team Pak and Nation”.

We can understand the low confidence level of the Pak army. To save its face, it had to issue official denial of the very existence of the Surgical Strikes and it would certainly have hurt the ego of its military commanders. When India released a video of its operations destroying Pak bunkers in retaliation to the cowardly act of beheading of Indian soldiers and pushing infiltrators in India, Pak army could find nothing to counter India but a fake video. Likewise, we cannot say anything about these images of Baluchistan and Srinagar shared here. They may well be products of Pak army’s propaganda factory. And to cap Pak army’s misery, the reports of its atrocity in Baluchistan are now being heard the world over after India has started highlighting the issue.