With Imran Khan failing, Bajwa opens another begging front. This time the Pakistan’s begging bowl is directed towards its arch-enemy India.
There are several factors that need to be considered to understand the current situation in Pakistan.
Worsening Domestic Conditions in Pakistan : High Inflation and Rising Wheat, Sugar prices.
It shold be noted that failure of Imran Khan in all spheres has lead the country and its people in poverty. Inflation is at its peak. As per reports from Pakistani Media, Sugar prices that used to be around 65 PKR in 2017 are hovering around 130 PKR in 2021.
Similarly wheat flour prices are also touching the sky. In spite of a drought and amidst massive shortages, Pakistan is forced to export it’s committed quota of rice and sugar to China, even if it means importing the two commodities at a premium price. As per Pakistan Media, Pakistan exported 150,000 tons of sugar to China while the export of 200,000 tons of rice by June-end 2019.
The condition worsoned under the mismanagement of the selected Prime Minister Imran Khan. According to the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics, the country imported over 278,482 tonnes of sugar by both public and private sectors during the July-January period of FY21. The Trading Corporation of Pakistan (TCP) imported 130,000 tonnes of sugar from August-November 2020 for consumption in Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Utility Stores.
Earlier in late 2019 we saw reports of acute shortage of Tomatoes and surge in tomato prices in Pakistan after India withdrew Most Favored Nation (MFN) status to Pakistan. Because of India withdrawing MFN status to Pakistan, Pakistan is forced to import essential commodities at higher prices from other countries that is causing a dent in their budget.
CPEC turns out to be a Black Hole
The corrupt polity and army needed to run it’s anti-Indian agenda even if it is at the expense of Pakistan and in the recent years, China has become the milch cow for Pakistani Army to spread it’s nefarious agenda. With matching interests over India, it is but natural that China will embrace Pakistan with open arms, but on it’s own terms. As like with every other country, China is slowly poisoning Pakistan by creating extreme shortages of foreign-exchange reserves. In the end, these countries will have to accept the invasion of their political and economic systems by the Communist Party of China.
With the unstable successive puppet governments at the Center in Pakistan, China wanted direct influence over the political and economic processes of the country. For a couple of years now an increasing number of reports have revealed that the civilian institutions responsible for the CPEC’s implementation are understaffed and overwhelmed, facing manifold difficulties such as lack of experience and subsequent ineffective project management, which in turn leads to delays and other hurdles in realizing projects. Pakistan created a new ‘CPEC authority’.
In fact nothing is in hands of Pakistan as everything is being done by the Chinese. As a pressure tactics, China occasionally stops CPEC funding to force Pakistan Government (that is already heavily indebted and on the verge of collapse) to promulgate Ordinances, hand over strategic assets including mines, natural resources, islands to China and the print versions are signed by the rubber stamp President without the knowledge and scrutiny of parliamentarians.
Some part of CPEC passes through Pakistan occupied territories of Kashmir and Gilgit Baltistan that both China and Pakistan fear that India can take back anytime there is a hostility/war between India-China and Pakistan tries to help China. All the Pakistan and Chinese Investment will be reduced to dust.
Related Article Paradise Turned Into Hell — Pakistan Occupied Gilgit-Baltistan.
A major portion of the CPEC passes through Pakistan occupied Balochistan. Pakistan has committed Genocide of its Baloch, Sindhi and Mohajirs in order to get control of the natural resources in the region of Balochistan and Sindhudesh and serve them in platter to its Chinese Masters. Balochistan’s National Army of Freedom Fighters have attacked Pakistan Military and Chinese workers many times in recent past giving a clear message that Pakistan or China will not be allowed to plunder the wealth of occupied Balochistan.
Chinese debt on Pakistan is mounting and Pakistan being unable to pay the mounting interest there on, Pakistan had to sell its daughters to China in lieu of payments for CPEC penalties. Pakistan Army abducted Baloch, Mohajirs, Sindhis, Pashtuns and killed them for Organ Harvesting. Pakistan gave away its hundreds of daughters under the garb of marriage as brides to Han Chinese. Pakistan had to sell Donkeys to survive. What did Pakistan get in return? Pakistan got only punture shops on the either side of the CPEC with Total Chinese Investment of $62 Billion and that too Chinese bring their own engineers and labour for these projects and locals get only the low cleaning Job.
Not only that, China made a $400 Billion deal with Iran leaving Pakistan frustrated. While the Chinese Debt on Pakistan is mounting and unable to pay even the interest to the Chinese, as per locals, Pakistan feels that it is raped cheaply by China for a meagre amount of $62 Billion while Iran took away lion’s share of $400 Billion.
Related Article Iran-China Deal : Disaster for Middle East, Mourning in Pakistan
Clashes with India on Line of Control (LoC)
Before the recent ceasefire declaration by Pakistan, there were daily clashes in different sectors on Line of Control (LoC) between India and Pakistan. India already has huge war reserves for a two-front war. But for Pakistsan, daily clashes with Indian Army has resulted in depleting its war reserves and a mounting bill that is borne by Pakistan’s Tax payers that are already overburdened.
Pakistan continues to infiltrate Islamist Radical Terrorists, smuggle arms and ammuniton, drugs into Indian Territory. Pakistan’s social media troll army is engaged in inciting Indians on all social media platforms. Pakistan continues to fund different groups to start protests and riots not only in India but in west also. All these have been a bone of contention between India Pakistan relations.
Peace Overtures by General Bajwa
Pakistan Army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa said on Thursday 18-March 2021 that it was time for India and Pakistan to “bury the past and move forward” as he asserted that the peace between the two neighbours would help to “unlock” the potential of South and Central Asia. Addressing a session of the first-ever Islamabad Security Dialogue, Gen Bajwa also said that the potential for regional peace and development always remained hostage to the disputes and issues between Pakistan and India – the two “nuclear-armed neighbours”.
“We feel it is time to bury the past and move forward,” he said, adding that the responsibility for a meaningful dialogue rested with India.
India last month said that it desires normal neighbourly relations with Pakistan in an environment free of terror, hostility and violence. India has said the onus is on Pakistan to create an environment free of terror and hostility. However Bajwa missed the underlying pre-requisite for peace i.e. “free of terror, hostility and violence” and that the “talks and terror” cannot go together.
Related Article Pakistan Ramps Up Drug Produce to Shore Up Flagging Incomes
India had asked Islamabad to take demonstrable steps against terror groups responsible for launching various attacks on India.
General Bajwa said, “Our neighbour will have to create a conducive environment, particularly in Kashmir, Gen Bajwa said, adding that any effort to improve ties without addressing the core issue would be vulnerable to external political factors”. However he ignored the fact that Pakistan is responsible for infiltrating Islamist Radical Terrorists, smuggling arms, ammunitions and drugs in Kashmir valley.
He further said, “The Kashmir issue is at the heart of this. It is important to understand that without the resolution of the Kashmir dispute through peaceful means, the process will always remain susceptible to derailment to politically motivated bellicosity. However he ommitted the fact that Kashmir is an integral part of India and Pakistan has illegally occupied territories of Indian Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan and has to return them to India one day.
Gen Bajwa’s remarks came a day after Prime Minister Imran Khan made a similar statement at the same venue. Prime Minister Khan said on Wednesday 17-March 2021 said India will be benefitted economically by having peace with Pakistan as it will enable New Delhi to directly access the resource-rich Central Asia region through Pakistani territory.
“India will have to take the first step. Unless they do so, we cannot do much,” Khan said while delivering the inaugural address at the launch of the two-day Dialogue. Khan said that having a direct route to the Central Asian region will economically benefit India. Central Asia is rich in oil and gas.
Central Asia, in the modern context, generally includes five resource-rich countries — Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. Gen Bajwa also that peace between Pakistan and India would help to “unlock the potential of South and Central Asia” by ensuring connectivity between East and West Asia.
However India is already working on an alternate route to these regions via Iran to the disadvantage of Pakistan. A route without including Pakitan will ensure a safe route without holding Indian Foreign Trade hostage to deteriorating conditions with Pakistan.
Both Prime Minister Khan and Gen Bajwa didn’t specify the minimum steps that India should take nor did they specify what Pakistan is going to do to stop Terrorism, smuggling of arms, ammunitions and drugs and stopping its troll army on Social Media and Pakistan’s funding to groups in India and abroad directing protests against India.
Related Article Pakistan Thrives in Terrorism Export Business While FATF Sleeps
Gen Bajwa also talked about poverty which he said was linked with the regional tension that had hindered the regional connectivity and integration. It seems like Pakisan has realized, as long hostilities with India continue, Pakistan’s foreign debt will continue to rise and pakistan public’s anger will take down not only Pakistan Government but also Pakistan Army.
Unable to bear the war bill with India, Bajwa said, “Despite being impoverished, we end up spending a lot of our money on defence, which naturally comes at the expense of human development. Pakistan was resisting the temptation to become part of the arms race or increase defence budget despite rising security challenges.”
Seeking a dignified way out of Pakistan’s blunder, Bajwa said, “This has not been easy, especially when you live in a hostile and unstable neighbourhood. But having said that, let me say that we are ready to improve our environment by resolving all our outstanding issues with our neighbours through dialogue in a dignified and peaceful manner.”
Ties between India and Pakistan nose-dived after a terror attack on the Pathankot Air Force base in 2016 by terror groups based in the neighbouring country. Subsequent attacks, including one on Indian Army camp in Uri, further deteriorated the relationship.
The relationship dipped further after India’s war planes pounded a Jaish-e-Mohammed terrorist training camp deep inside Pakistan on February 26, 2019 in response to the Pulwama terror attack in which 40 CRPF jawans were killed. The relations deteriorated after India announced withdrawing special powers of Jammu and Kashmir and bifurcation of the state into two union territories in August, 2019.
Talking about the concept of national security, Gen Bajwa said that it was not just about protecting countries from an external and internal threat. “Today, the leading drivers of change in the world are demography, economy and technology. However, one issue that remains central to this concept is economic security and cooperation, he said.
He said that since national security involved ensuring human security, national progress and development, it was not solely the function of the armed forces and required a national effort to safeguard a nation.
Walk The Talk : Indian Punjab Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh Tells Gen Bajwa
Terming Islamabad-sponsored terrorism as the biggest hurdle to normalizing relations between the two nations, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Friday 19-March 2021 said Pakistan Chief of Army Staff, General Qamar Javed Bajwa, should back his rhetoric on peace with India with solid action.
Bajwa should first control his ISI, and then talk about stability in Indo-Pak relations, said the Chief Minister, adding that India cannot afford to go soft with Pakistan till they walk the talk and prove their sincerity with concrete actions.
“Infiltration into India from across the border is still happening, Indian soldiers are being killed at the borders every day. They (Pakistan) are dropping arms and heroin into Punjab via drones every other day. Efforts to create trouble in my state continue to take place. All this should stop first, only then we can talk peace,” said Captain Amarinder.
For India to trust Pakistan, the latter will have to do much more than offer an olive branch, said the Chief Minister, citing his own experience of 1964 as ADC to GOC-in-C, Western Command. “We used to receive daily reports then of firing and trouble from the western border, as we continue to do now,” he said.
It is important for not just Bajwa but the entire Pakistan military apparatus to be on board with the idea of burying the past and paving the way for peace with India, said Captain Amarinder, adding that it is not New Delhi but Islamabad which has obstructed the path of peace between the two countries.
“Are they all of the same view as shared by General Bajwa? Are they withdrawing all support to terror groups immediately? Have they asked ISI to back off and leave India alone?” These, said the Chief Ministers, are questions that need to be answered before India can start believing in, and responding to, Pakistan’s overtures of peace. “India is all for peace, all Indians stand for peace, but India cannot compromise on its security and integrity,” he stressed, adding that peace cannot be conditional.
Given the way the situation has evolved over the past few months, Pakistan’s increasing collusion with China, which has been causing a whole lot of trouble for India on the other border, is a matter of concern, the Chief Minister said. “If Islamabad seriously wants peace with New Delhi, they should send out the message to Beijing, loud and clear, that Pakistan is not with them in the dangerous escapades at the Line of Actual Control (LAC).
Points to Ponder
Will Pakistan stop infiltrating Islamist Radical Terrorists into India, stop smuggling of arms and ammunitions and drugs into India, stop its troll army to incite certain groups in India, stop its Intelligence Agency ISI to create trouble in India and promote hate against Indian Government?
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