Recent events surrounding the capture of a ‘suspicious’ Pakistani fishing boat in the Arabian Sea in the early hours of January 1 and attempts at infiltration by militants across the International Border into India, have yet again cast a shadow on Islamabad’s promise of not distinguishing between the ‘good’ and ‘bad’ terror elements. Coast Guard patrol vessels intercepted ‘a suspicious’ Pakistani fishing boat, thwarting what the Indian security establishment contends could have been another attempt to unleash mayhem like the 26/11 terror strikes in Mumbai.
Meanwhile, according to security agencies in India, a large group comprising of about 40-45 terrorists are waiting at the launching pads just across the Samba sector in Jammu and Kashmir to infiltrate, amid the cover of cross-border firing between the Border Security Force and Pakistan Rangers. These agencies contend that these militants aim to carry out ‘spectacular attacks’ ahead of US President Barack Obama’s visit to India on Republic Day.
This line of thinking has been taken up by the central establishment as well. Home Minister Rajnath Singh accused Pakistan of trying to push terrorists into Jammu and Kashmir and giving cover to such attempts by continuous firing along the border. Although, no independent verification has been forthcoming, suspicious activities across the border have yet again reiterated the view that Pakistan continues to indulge in these double games to pursue its foreign objectives. Managing and using these terror groups, according to the needs of the moment, has been a habit practiced by the Pakistani security establishment.
There is some positive news surrounding the closer collusion between the new Afghan government, Pakistan and the United States in dealing with these terror elements, with extremists unable to take refuge in one country or the other. Pessimists, or realists, however, believe that such habits die hard. However, they must see that the cost of such a policy is too large to bear on a nation’s conscience, especially in light of the brutal attack on an Army School in Peshawar, where 132 children were massacred.