INDIA’S HOT PURSUIT IS EXPECTED TO GET HOTTER

India says it did enter the Myanmarese territory on Tuesday (morning of June 9) to carry out attacks on terrorists camps there, believed to be of the outfits (NSCN-K, PLA, KYKL, KLO, ULFA (I) and others) behind the June 4 terror strike in Chandel that left 18 Indian Army soldiers dead.

Myanmar had not reacted on the claim initially. But even June 10’s reaction had two versions (contradicting each other).

Professionalism needed the Indian establishment to go silent about it. The Indian Army did so, not mentioning ‘entering in Myanmar’ even once during its presser and in the press-release. It maintained ‘covertness’ of the ‘covert operation’.

But the political establishment could not do so. The ruling block saw a good political branding opportunity here to claim ‘paradigm shift in India’s anti-terror policy’ under the new government and its strong Prime Minister.

Even if it is in the realm of ‘policy debates’ and, ideally, the political establishment should have followed the policy adopted by the Indian Army, the happenings on that front are contrary, and the Opposition is targeting that.

Zaw Htay, the person whom the contradicting reports quoted on June 10 on ‘India entering in Myanmar’ didn’t come forward to clear the position. He is the director of the office of the President of Myanmar. Any other response, so far, has not been given by Myanmar.

Anyway, there are reasons to believe India did enter in hot-pursuit in Myanmar and destroyed the terrorists camps there based on the available intelligence.

And we can see more such attacks in the days ahead. It is in line with Narendra Modi’s tough and direct approach on terrorism.

Jitendra Singh arrived in Myanmar yesterday. He is MoS, Prime Minister’s Office and MoS, Development of the North-eastern Region. National Security Advisor Ajit Doval is reaching there today. Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar emphatically talked about the ‘changed way’ to deal with terrorists. He said, “Those who fear India’s new posture have already started reacting. If the thinking pattern changes, lot of things change. You have seen for the last 2-3 days. A simple action against insurgents has changed the mindset of the full security scenario in the country.”

So, even if the issue of ‘hot pursuit’ is hot on air waves and in political circles for reasons including contentious points, India’s anti-terror policy is going to be hotter in coming days.

Even if Pakistan is left out of this ‘new and bold’ approach, India shares friendly foreign relations with other neighbouring countries of South Asia, i.e., Myanmar, Bangladesh, Bhutan and Nepal. Narendra Modi has taken steps to improve ties and has been reciprocated.

India’s relation with Pakistan has been hostile mostly and is witnessing a low turn these days. And China would not allow terror camps on its soil, especially after experiencing insurgency in Xinjiang.

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

INDIA’S HOT PURSUIT IN MYANMAR: PAKISTAN OVERREACTS

India says it did enter the Myanmarese territory to carry out attacks on terrorists camps there, believed to be of the outfits behind the June 4 terror strike in Chandel that left 18 Indian Army soldiers dead.

The professional conduct needed the Indian establishment to go silent about it. The Indian Army did so, not mentioning ‘entering in Myanmar’ even once during its presser and in the press-release. It maintained ‘covertness’ of the ‘covert operation’.

But the political establishment could not do so. The ruling block saw a good political branding opportunity here to claim ‘paradigm shift in India’s anti-terror policy’.

Even if it is in the realm of ‘policy debates’ and, ideally, the political establishment should have chosen the policy followed by the Indian Army, the happenings on that front are contrary, and the Opposition is targeting it.

But it is not just in India that we are seeing intense activity over it.

Across the border, in Pakistan, India’s hot-pursuit is generating much political concern. In India, the Opposition is opposing the way the government is publicising it and trying to take credit for it. In Pakistan, the establishment there is thinking that what would happen if India decides to carry a Myanmar like operation in Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir and Pakistani territories along the International Border.

Even if that is not so easy. India and Pakistan ties, that have been historically hostile, are witnessing a low turn these days while India shares friendly foreign relations with Myanmar, Bangladesh, Bhutan and Nepal. Narendra Modi has taken steps to improve ties and has been reciprocated.

India is a much larger and stronger country than Pakistan and the gap is widening. It is happening in a country where anti-India stand and rhetoric has been the lifeline of military and political establishments.

So, even if going inside PoK or Pakistani territory may not be on Indian agenda, the response by the Pakistani establishments is like ‘India is planning an imminent attack in the border territories of Pakistan or areas under Pakistan’s control’.

And everyone in Pakistan’s establishment – from its Prime Minister – to its Army Chief – to its former President – are issuing statements and reacting in the way so as to hide their frustration behind words.

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/

Go through these:

Nawaz Sharif – Prime Minister, Pakistan

June 11 – Recent statements by Indian ministers have hampered our relations with India. The entire nation is dismayed over these irresponsible and imprudent statements by the Indian leadership. Despite these statements we will continue our efforts towards good neighbourly relations but they need to be reciprocated. (The Express Tribune)

June 11 – Pakistan will protect its territory at all costs and this message should be heard loud and clear. (The Express Tribune)

June 10 – Amidst a fresh salvo of hostile rhetoric from New Delhi, Nawaz said that the recent provocative statements of Indian leaders are ‘disappointing’. He called upon the United Nations Security Council to ensure implementation of its resolutions to resolve the festering dispute over the Himalayan region of Kashmir. (The Express Tribune)

Raheel Sharif – Pakistan’s Army Chief

June 10 – Taking strong exception to a series of threats from India, formation commanders’ conference presided over by Army Chief General Raheel Sharif made it clear, Pakistan was ready to defeat Indian ‘designs’ and defend the territorial integrity. “The forum took serious notice of the recent Indian hostile rhetoric coupled with covert and overt actions to destabilize Pakistan,” the military’s media wing said. It was termed as highly regrettable that Indian politicians not only indulge in actions that are in violation of the United Nations’ Charter, but also take pride in claiming their interference in the internal affairs of other states, it added. The forum was given comprehensive briefings on security environment and professional issues. (The Nation)

Resolution of Pakistan’s Senate and National Assembly

June 11 – The Senate today passed a unanimous resolution strongly condemning the recent disturbing pattern of provocative and hostile statements by Indian leaders including threatening attacks against Pakistani territory. In response to another question, the Spokesperson said that Pakistan is fully capable of defending its territorial integrity against any foreign Aggression. (Radio Pakistan)

Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Government of Pakistan

June 10 – In response to another question, the Spokesperson said that Pakistan is fully capable of defending its territorial integrity against any foreign Aggression.

Parvez Musharraf – Former Pakistan President and Former Army Chief General

June 10 – Deal with them with sovereign equality, my experience is they will further suppress if we back off. Their stance is offensive one. We do not want to use nuclear capability but if our existence comes under threat, who do we have these nuclear weapons for? If I say in Ch Shujaat’s style, do we have nukes saved to be used on Shab-e-Baraat? (Dunya News)

June 10 – “Neither the Pakistani armed forces, nor the people here are wearing bangles. This is Pakistan, not Myanmar. Modi’s presentation of the Fall of Dhaka picture to Bangladeshi PM and his open admission of Indian interference to internally destabilize Pakistan has exposed India’s true face. It clearly shows that India is intended to establish its supremacy by interfering in neighboring countries, but it must not forget that this is Pakistan. (Ary News)

Chaudhry Nisar – Interior Minister, Pakistan

June 10 – Responding to a statement issued by Indian Minister Rajyavardhan Rathore, Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar said that Pakistan wanted peace in the region yet its friendly overtures should not be confused as a sign of weakness. Chaudhry Nisar said that India should not mistake Pakistan for Myanmar as its armed forces possess the capability to give a befitting reply to any Indian act of aggression.Lambasting the norm of repeated aggressive statements from the other side of the border, Chaudhry Nisar said that the Indian leadership should stop day-dreaming and face reality. (The News International)

Sartaz Aziz – Advisor to Pakistan’s Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs and National Security

June 10 – The premier’s senior aide affirmed Pakistan will take all possible measures to unveil India’s role in the breakup of East Pakistan in 1971. “We will take all possible steps to expose India’s role in the breakup of East Pakistan in 1971 and its threat to destabilise Pakistan through terrorism,” Sartaj Aziz told the Senate on Wednesday. Aziz further said, “The government has taken strong notice of Modi’s statement in which he acknowledged his country’s role in the events of 1971 in the then-East Pakistan.” (The Express Tribune)

WHO IS ZAW HTAY?

Well, who is Zaw Htay.

It is a Burmese name but there is no Wikipedia page available on it on first page of Google search with related thread. The first link that returns with the search is of some doctor of the same name.

Anyway, the Zaw Htay I was looking for, is a very important person in Myanmar. He is the director of the office of the President of Myanmar.

And he has become important for India as well after yesterday’s development.  Before that, he was virtually unknown in India except in concerned diplomatic circles.

Foreign media publications like The Wall Street Journal and Foreign Policy reported that India did enter in Myanmar’s territory to carry out surgical attacks on terrorists camps operating in India’s North-East from from Myanmar’s soil. The successful covert operation is being seen as a bold (with many firsts) retaliatory response to the June 4 Chandel attack by terrorists in Manipur that had left 18 soldiers dead.

The Wall Street Journal wrote: “Zaw Htay, director of the office of Myanmar President Thein Sein, confirmed Wednesday that Indian troops had entered his country. He said that there was “coordination and cooperation” between the Indian troops and Myanmar’s armed forces based in the area of the raids, but added that no Myanmar soldiers were directly involved. “We will never allow or support insurgents, whether [they are] against Myanmar or against our neighboring countries,” Mr. Zaw Htay added.”
(June 10, around 3 PM)

Foreign Policy wrote: “Director of the office of Myanmar President Thein Sein Zaw Htay, confirmed on Wednesday that Indian troops had entered his country’s border. He said that there was “coordination and cooperation” between authorities but no Myanmar soldiers were directly involved.”
(June 10, around 6:30 PM, as Google search reflected it)

But by the late evening, contradictory reports emerged, based on ‘his Facebook post’ that denied Indian Army’s entry in Myanmar’s territory. Similar reports said: “In a Facebook post Wednesday Zaw Htay, director of Myanmar’s presidential office, said: “According to the information sent by Tatmadaw (Myanmar army) battalions on the ground, we have learned that the military operation was performed on the Indian side at India-Myanmar border,” he said. “Myanmar will not accept any foreigner who attacks neighbouring countries in the back and creates problems by using our own territory,” he added.”

Most reports quoted (and are quoting) AFP story and The Strait Times published it at around 7 PM. Soon, others picked it up.

Now, even if the Indian Army has avoided mentioning ‘entering in Myanmarese territory’ in its official release, the political class is busy in taking credits (with the resultant blame game).

This contradiction will only intensify it. The situation has exacerbated ‘after contradictory reports on statements of Mr. Zaw Htay.

And only Mr. Htay or any representative of the Myanmar government can clarify it. Meanwhile, I tried but could not locate Mr. Htay ‘Facebook post’.

©/IPR: Santosh Chaubey – https://santoshchaubey.wordpress.com/