The article originally appeared on India Today.

Pakistans federal cabinet has decided to observe Friday as Kashmir Solidarity Day against the killing of 13 militants on April 1. Pakistani Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi was in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir today.

Continuing the anti-India Pakistani propaganda, he addressed the state legislature telling that Pakistan would soon send delegations to different countries to apprise them about so-called deteriorating situations in Jammu and Kashmir.

Emphatically stating that Pakistan stands shoulder to shoulder with the Kashmiri people for their right to self-discrimination, he demanded plebiscite in J&K under the UN Security Council resolution, a stand that India does not recognise.

The UNSC mandate required Pakistan to remove its troops from PoK and to hold the plebiscite which Jawaharlal Nehru had agreed to. However, Pakistan didnt remove its troops. Instead, it chose to give Indian Territory under its occupation to Indias rival, China.

Primarily, the state of Jammu and Kashmir was legally part of India with the Instrument of Accession (IoA) signed by ruling king of the state Maharaja Hari Singh.

Calling Indian occupation of J-K a reign of terror, the Pakistani PM said that Indian forces in the valley have been threatening the people. He added that separatist voices and protests have always been there and Pakistan is politically united to support them.

He said Kashmir is an internationally recognized dispute and is a challenge to the conscience of the international community and demanded that India should allow the UN Human Rights Commission to investigate if there are cases of human rights violations in the state.



The article originally appeared on India Today.

Pakistan army has rejected India’s objections over ill-treatment meted out to Kulbhushan Jadhav’s family. Maj Gen Asif Ghafoor, DG, and Inter-Services Public Relations said in a press conference that the meeting was a humanitarian gesture and India should rather respect Pakistan’s move.

In response to a question on whether the decision to allow the Kulbhushan Jadhav family was taken under some international pressure, the spokesperson of Pakistan army said there was no such thing and the meeting being a humanitarian gesture and not a consular access is a proof of that.

Maj Gen Ghafoor also reiterated the routine Pakistani rant of freedom struggle in Kashmir and dismissed the reports that Indian soldiers conducted surgical strike inside Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir and boasted that “India cannot lure Pakistan into such unprofessional undertakings.”


The ill-treatment of Kulbhushan Jadhav’s mother and wife has outraged India and the nation’s sentiment was reflected today in the Parliament when all political parties came together to denounce the Pakistani act of using pain and suffering of a family to further its anti-India propaganda. Pakistan had allowed Jadhav’s mother and wife to meet him earlier this month and the meeting was held on 25 August.

The meeting that lasted for 40 minutes was arranged in a container with a glass barrier between Jadhav and his family. They were not allowed to speak in Marathi and Hindi. Before the meeting, Pakistani authorities forced Jadhav’s mother and wife to change their clothes and remove their Mangalsutra, bindis and bangles. And after seeing their son and husband, who is on death row, they were allowed to be heckled by an insensitive Pakistani media that addressed them with phrases like ‘mother of a killer son’ or ‘a husband who had killed thousands of innocent Pakistanis’.

Kulbhushan Jadhav is a former Indian Navy officer who was on a routine business trip in Iran from where he was abducted by terrorists and later sold to Pakistan’s notorious intelligence agency ISI. Pakistan, on its part, claims Jadhav was arrested from Balochistan. Seeing an opportunity to further its anti-India propaganda, Pakistan declared the innocent Indian a spy engaged in subversive activities and after a sham trial, sentenced him to death.

Pakistan, the country that has been declared a terror haven by the US, didn’t respond to the multiple demands made by India for consular access to Jadhav. India moved to the International Court of Justice in May against Pakistan which stayed Jadhav’s hanging till the matter was decided.



The article originally appeared on India Today. 

Pakistan has long been accusing India of trying to sabotage the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). Top Pakistani politicians and army generals have been blaming India for staging attacks in Pakistan through its external intelligence agency, the Research and Analysis Wing (RAW). Obviously, all this has been without proof.

But now the Pakistani propaganda has gone a step ahead by incorporating figures like when India founded this so called anti-CPEC cell and how much fund was allocated to it. General Zubair Mahmood Hayat, Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee of Pakistan, while addressing an event in Islamabad today, charged India of running a cell to disrupt the CPEC.

“RAW established a new cell with a special allocation of over $500 million in 2015 to sabotage CPEC projects in Pakistan,” a Dawn report quoted him saying. While addressing an event in Islamabad, he further said, “India’s indirect interference in Pakistan is manifested in sponsoring Tehreek-i-Taliban-Pakistan (TTP), Baloch and other sub-nationalist outfits and many other terrorist groups.”

Now the world can see through such baseless allegations coming from a country that is seen as a safe haven for terrorists and is increasingly becoming isolated in the world for this very reason, especially when it is against India, the world’s largest democracy, a growing global power, both economically as well as militarily and a responsible geopolitical entity.

It is Pakistan, in fact, that has been giving shelter to India’s and the world’s most wanted like Lashkar-e-Taiba’s Hafiz Saeed, Jaish-e-Mohammed’s Masood Azhar, Dawood Ibrahim and is main terror exporter to India, a fact that major world powers including the US and UK have started accepting. How can the world forget that Al Qaeda chief Osama bin Laden was in hiding in Pakistan for years before he was hunted down and killed? How can Pakistan convince the world that it is not home to the Taliban and Al Qaeda factions and the Haqqani Network?

While the ruling Pakistani elite have been brazenly lying about establishing peace in their country and browbeating their propaganda to the world to tell that they have wiped out every terror outfit, the fact is, this year alone, over 450 civilians and around 200 security forces personnel have lost their lives in over 100 incidents in the country, data from South Asia Terrorism Portal shows.


China’s One Belt One Road initiative aims to de velop economic corridors in Asia, Africa and Europe, something that India is opposed to as one of such corridors, the CPEC. India is opposed to CPEC because a part of it passes through Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir that is legally India’s. For strategic reasons also, India doesn’t welcome a Chinese presence just across the border in a disputed territory that India considers its own.


Pakistan sees the CPEC, a long term $75 billion project from Gwadar port in Balochistan to Kashgar China’s Xinjiang province, as the next big thing in the nation’s history that will transform it into of hub and economic activity in this part of Asia.

But the fact is, it passes through many restive regions of Pakistan including Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir (PoK) and Balochistan and terrorists groups that are hostile to China, including TTP and Al Qaeda, have threatened to attack Chinese investments in the corridor to avenge the so-called atrocities against Uygur Muslims in Xinjiang province.

Then there are ethnic people of areas the CPEC passes through who are opposed to it. A combine of religious groups in Gilgit Baltistan has demanded the complete removal of Pakistan’s Army from its soil.

Baloch people, who are fighting the Pakistani establishment for their freedom and have long been accusing Pakistan of exploiting their province, see the CPEC as yet another tool to exploit the Baloch people. Baloch nationalists blame Pakistan for forcefully acceding their province. Pakistani security forces are alleged to have killed thousands of Baloch people. Reports of rape, torture and disappearances are common. Baloch people say they are ethnically different from Pakistanis and are demanding freedom or autonomy to decide their own affairs.

How bad is the security scenario in the CPEC regions also reflects in the fact that Pakistan has raised a Special Security Division (SSD) of 15000 soldiers to protect some 7000 Chinese individuals and CPEC installations that are coming up. This is when the project has just begun. The CPEC was proposed in 2013 and an agreement between Pakistan and China was signed in May 2013.



The article originally appeared on India Today.

The 72nd Session of the United Nations General Assembly is in progress in New York and the Pakistani delegation here has some tough job on its hand to do, obviously including the routine anti-India propaganda.

So the prime minister of Pakistan is busy spewing venom against India in New York where he is leading his country’s delegation to the UNGA while ministers and senior officials of his government back home in Islamabad are complementing his efforts.

And their efforts are based on negating two highly hostile perceptions about Pakistan, especially with the Donald Trump presidency in America – one, that it is a safe terror haven and the other, that trusting Pakistan in Afghanistan affairs have been counter-productive and it is better to go with India.

So, Pakistan’s prime minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi is busy telling the world community and more importantly to the US that how India is an existential threat for Pakistan and it is rather a terror victim with an impressive track record in fighting and eliminating terrorists and the US declaring it a safe haven for terrorists is unjustified, even if he wasn’t given a chance to have one-on-one meeting with Donald Trump.

The fact is, Trump has not met a Pakistani prime minister, be it Abbasi or his predecessor Nawaz Sharif, so far in his presidency and it is a telling sign that Pakistan has lost its credibility in Washington.

Like Nawaz Sharif was humiliated at the US-Arab-Islamic Summit in Riyadh in May this year, Donald Trump’s first major interaction with the Muslim nations of the world, this time, too, the Pakistani prime minister met the same fate. Reportedly, Trump refused to meet Abbasi as ‘he was too busy’.

Abbasi then had to settle down on a meeting with US Vice-President Mike Pence where, as per Pakistani claims, the two sides agreed to remain engaged “to achieve shared objectives of peace, stability and economic prosperity in the region.” Also, Abbasi told yesterday, in another boastful claim, that Trump thought positively on Pakistan’s role in the war against terror, refuting claims of downward spiral in US-Pakistan ties.

While the truth is, the US is disappointed and angry over Pakistan’s double-dealings, the country that has been a major recipient of US financial aid, over $15 billion in just last five years. While unveiling his government’s Afghanistan centric South Asia policy last month, Trump had slammed Pakistan and had warned that the US would no longer be silent about Pakistan’s double-dealings and had demanded that Pakistan’s attitude of doublespeak had to change immediately.

Abbasi, reportedly, also complained to the US, in fact, in his meeting with Mike Pence about US policy change on Afghanistan which seeks greater Indian role in Afghanistan rebuilding process, something that Pakistan believes is hostile to its interests in the region. And today, he went on to say that Pakistan sees ‘zero role for India in Afghanistan and will never accept India politically or militarily engaged in Afghanistan’.

Repeating Pakistan’s rant on Kashmir, an integral part of India where Pakistan is fuelling terror and separatism, that India is suppressing the freedom struggle of the Kashmiris, Abbasi, after a long time, again took the line that Pakistan has developed tactical nuclear weapons to take on the Indian threat. Pakistan had left the practice of issuing hollow nuclear threats to India after the surgical strike last September in Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir that left Pakistan’s ruling elite humiliated and divided.

Back in Pakistan, its ministers and officers are busy extending helping hands to their prime minister.

Its Foreign Office is repeating the routine Pakistani propaganda that “India is involved in funding terrorism in Pakistan” with a new vigour. Apart from blaming India for fomenting terror in its provinces including the restive Balochistan province, Pakistan is also blaming India to fund the anti-Pakistan campaign by Baloch activists in Geneva while the reality is the world community has now started accepting Pakistan’s atrocities in Balochistan and Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir.

The country is also taking on other countries like Japan that endorse the Indian viewpoint that Pakistan is a terror sponsor nation. The Indo-Japan joint statement last week during Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe’s India visit had denounced Pakistan as a country harbouring terrorists.

Yesterday, Pakistan’s Defence Minister Khurram Dastagir Khan accused India of trying to sabotage the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), a $50 Billion Chinese investment that passes through Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir, legally an Indian territory. The same minister had last week boasted that it was not Pakistan’s job to satisfy the US. And only a week later, the Pakistani prime minister is trying to woo the US administration in the US.



Adding another angle to its anti-India rhetoric, Chinese state publication Global Times has now called the Chinese companies to wait and see before making a decision to invest in India.

An editorial in the publication warns Chinese companies that “violent attacks against Chinese personnel and companies may happen in India if the two countries see even small-scale military tension at the border.”

Drawing a Vietnam parallel where, according to the article, anti-China riots in 2014 due to Vietnam-China tension on South China Sea claims left many Chinese dead and over 100 injured, it says that though India is a potential market, the would-be investors from China should perhaps take a wait-and-see approach and then in a judgemental tone, goes on to say that due to this prevailing scenario, “new investment from China into India is likely to be reduced.”

The editorial warns that that Indian nationalism may push an anti-China sentiment in the same way in India as in Vietnam with the escalating border tension and it may be further fuelled by ethnic and religious factors and the “Chinese firms doing business in India, especially those in the retail and consumer electronics industries, need to take precautions against possible boycotts and should strive to ensure the personal safety of Chinese workers if there is an escalation in tensions between the two countries.”

The border standoff between China and India near the Bhutan tri-junction in the Doklam area in the Sikkim sector is now in its 20th day and both sides are maintaining their tough stands.

China has already ratcheted up its anti-India rhetoric, infusing it with war threats, saying it is now up to India to deescalate the border tension and withdraw its troops from an area that it claims as its own, as Chinese Ambassador to India Lau Zhaohui reiterated in an interview yesterday while India maintains that the India-China border in the area is still not fully demarcated, and Beijing, in fact, in 2012 agreed that any solution can be reached at only after consultation among all parties including Bhutan.

Doklam that China considers a part of its Donglang region has been a long running territorial dispute between Bhutan and China and Bhutan even issued a demarche to China on construction of road in the area by the PLA. Indian troops entered the area to prevent the road construction with India informing China that it was against the agreement of maintaining the status quo in the area as agreed in the past.

But an autocratic and expansionist China refused to budge, and in fact, has unleashed an intense propaganda war against India aimed to dislodge the legally valid Indian claims and has employed every possible propaganda tool in its arsenal, be it the high pitched ‘war possibility’ threat or arrogant responses delivered by its higher level officials including daily briefings of its foreign ministry or indiscriminate verbal firing rounds by its official publications like Global Times of Xinhua.



The article originally appeared on India Today.

Though Pakistan has dismissed India’s claims of punitive assault on Pak post across the Line of Control (LoC), the restlessness in its military establishment belie their words. Had it not been so, every apparatus of its military wing, i.e., its army, air force and navy, would not have scrambled to come forward to issue warnings to India and would not have to use false propaganda video and hollow words threatening India.

After the Indian Army yesterday released the video footage of its operations destroying a Pak post in the Naushera Sector on May 9, the Pak army first denied it. Then after few hours, came up with its video claiming it was, in fact Pakistan, who destroyed Indian posts in the Naushera Sector on May 13. The Indian Army readily dismissed this false propaganda as the Pak army, in its desperate efforts to counter Indian claims, released an old video with many edits.

After it the news came that Pakistan Air Force (PAF) fighter jets flew near the Siachen Glacier, the world’s highest battlefield, amid reports that PAF has made fully functional all its forward operating bases. India denied that Indian airspace was violated in PAF’s adventure.

Then we heard PAF’s chief, Sohail Aman, threatening India with his exhortation that “PAF’s response to any aggression by the enemy will be such that their future generations will also remember it”, a Radio Pakistan report quoted him saying. He chose to threaten India during a drill of Pak fighter planes at the Skardu air base in the backdrop of Siachen adventure and its connection with the anti-India propaganda was clearly visible, by his words and circumstances in which he uttered those words.

When Pak army and air force had played it part in anti-India propaganda, why would the Pak navy be left behind. According to another Radio Pakistan report, while addressing a gathering in Lahore’s Naval War College, its naval chief, Admiral Muhammad Zakaullah, warned India that ” the Pakistan Navy was fully capable to thwart any aggression and will be equipped with the latest equipment to defend maritime borders of the country”.

And all this in a span of less than 24 hours. The way Pakistan’s military establishment has been left rattled after the Indian Army released footage of its operations yesterday tells its dismissal of the Indian claims was a mere hogwash.