ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Army has been put on high alert, due to a possible threat of another attempt by India to conduct a surgical strike inside Pakistan’s territorial boundaries, sources told Pardachaak on Wednesday.
India was preparing to launch another attack on the Line of Control (LoC) and across the Working Boundary at Pulwama, after facing shameful defeat in Doklam and Ladakh, posing a threat to the regional stability, they said.
The decision to put the army on high alert comes days after the Indian administration approved the formation of a new post of deputy chief of strategy at the army headquarters as per a plan envisioned during the Doklam crisis with China in 2017, besides creating the position of director general information warfare who will also be dealing with media affairs.
An official said, to distract the international attention from several of its internal issues, including atrocities committed by Indian forces in occupied Kashmir and criticism of its policies by international institutions and media, the ongoing farmers’ protest and its handling of minorities, a “false flag operation” was being planned by India. “India may at any time repeat a Pulwama-like drama to divert attention from the internal glitches and was planning an action along the LoC and Working Boundary,” he added.
Indian forces started ceasefire violations later in the day, injuring a civilian woman and martyring two Pakistan Army soldiers in different areas of Azad Jammu and Kashmir, officials said.
Meanwhile, The Inter Services Public Relations (ISPR) acknowledged the soldiers as Sepoy Zaroof, 31 and Lance Naik Tariq, 38, in a tweet. Pakistan’s Armed forces responded befittingly to the ceasefire violations consequently stopping Indian violation, added the ISPR.
In 2016, Indian claim was rubbished by Pakistan when India had claimed to have carried out a surgical strike on the LoC. Similarly, Indian pilot Wing Commander Abhinandan was arrested and later released when on Feb 26 last year, India had tried to launch a similar operation against Pakistan but failed to do so and two of its planes had been shot down by Pakistan Air Force.
India has so far this year committed 2,831 ceasefire violations, with the number of civil casualties totaling 270. India had committed 9,215 ceasefire violations between 2014 and 2019, involving 1,403 casualties, the sources said.
Shaffaq Mohammed, a British politician of Kashmiri heritage, talked about the brutal lockdown now for more than a year imposed in Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir following the revocation in August 2019 of Articles 370 and 35A that gave the region special status and autonomy. He related the ideology of Hindutva targeting minorities in India and the fascism in Europe that led to the killing of around six million Jews.
US Congresswoman-elect Marie Newman, who won election in Illinois’s 3rd congressional district to the United States House of Representatives as the Democratic nominee, spoke about the change in the US and vowed her full support to rights groups calling for accountability of the Indian government with respect to human rights in the country.
Federal Senator and Greens Foreign Affairs spokesman Janet Rice said that human rights were fundamental and must be protected in all countries and for all people.
“We are particularly concerned at the impacts on religious minorities, political opposition groups, indigenous peoples and other defenseless communities. Sadly in India, as in many countries around the world, people’s human rights are recurrently not valued,” he added.
He said the forum was a significant opportunity to hear from human rights advocates and a range of voices from around the world.
International virtual seminar debated the question ‘Is India becoming a fascist state?’
In response to the rising authoritarian tendencies of the Modi government and human rights violations in the country, speakers at an international virtual seminar on Wednesday debated the question, “Is India becoming a fascist state?.”
“The violence of police, destruction of civil liberties and the increasing politicisation of the judiciary mean that people are now seriously questioning, ‘Is India skidding towards fascism?,” NSW MP David Shoebridge said in his inaugural statement on the significance of the event.
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Professor Anjali Arondekar, a professor of Feminist Studies and director of Centre for South Asian Studies, University of California, talked about the marginalisation of low caste Indians and other minorities, including Muslims, by the incumbent BJP government and caste-based discrimination in India.