Islamabad ï¿½ The tetchy choice of assimilating Lal Krishna Advani to a key slot ï¿½ the deputy prime minister ï¿½ has factually opened ‘a Pandora’s box ‘for the piteous minority of India in meticulous and the billion-plus populace in broad-spectrum due to lunacy of this guy for envy and ache for junk of arsenal instead of curiosity towards the vital needs of the mankind, dwelling in his ancestral soil, by now overcast by billows of burgeoning perils because of the eyeballs standoff of the troops of India and Pakistan, as an upshot of New Delhi’s cantankerous mind-set vis-ï¿½-vis the ground realities, a prologue for a lifelong peace in this part of the Earth planet.
As an architect of the war hysteria, Advani is ï¿½ by and large – ostracized in every pragmatic circle of India even in the Congress Party which ruled for decades with an antagonistic facade towards Pakistan, perceptibly a bit slighter than the one adopted by the fanatic Hindu party, the BJP. Prima facie, by inserting LKA in the momentous chair of deputy premiership ï¿½ the off-colour Atal Behari Vajpayee has ï¿½ in a way ï¿½ got his days of headship numbered. This conjecture seeks an impetus from a unsullied statement of Ram Lal Pisvas, an opposition leader hailing from the noted political party Lok Jan Shankti, ï¿½once the Finance Minister ï¿½ who has said in Bhopal that ‘only a flimsy prime minister requires an aide. NDTV quotes him as saying ‘this is an inane step.’ Ram Vilas ‘in the gone-by era, whenever such a gauge was applied, it culminated into the ouster of the sitting premier. ‘History stands bystander to this reality’, he remarks. Akin observations are in the offing from oth! ers including the Nehru family-created Congress party. The medley of hawkish LKA as deputy PM is a tip-off that India’s superseding party is peeling its laissez-faire icon in favour of hardliners of Hindu xenophobia ahead of general elections listed for 2004.
At the same time, it seems that this is an initiation of a toning up manoeuvre within the BJP. Hence Advani’s appointment sluices trepidation about the line of succession in the BJP after (Vajpayee) and swells his (Advani’s) seize on power.
The re- configuration of the post of deputy PM ï¿½ and that too for someone blatantly like a pugnacious Advani – marks the beginning of the BJP shedding its liberal image to return to its Hindu jingoistic agenda. This is conspicuous from the fact that BJP had of late appointed hardliner Hindu MP, Vinay Katiyar, to skull the party in erratic Uttar Pradesh state.
An Indian analyst, Kiran Saxena, has endorsed this view by saying that ‘the BJP had given notice it was preparing to shed its liberal image for a more hardline stance when the Vajpayee government refused to sack Narendra Modi, the chief minister of the Gujarat state for his inability to control sectarian violence.’
This is pertinent to catalogue that the BJP now rules only four states of India whereas the main opposition, Congress party rules 14 states. Obviously due to this scenario, BJP contemplates to translate the ‘wicked and husky design within the party that ‘it needs to return to its wacky agenda of Hindutva -aggressive bigotry – to exert a pull on to the voters.
May be it is known that born in November 1927 in Karachi, Advani began his political career as an activist of the Hindu extremist club Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh (RSS) – the ideological parent of the BJP.
Advani, (74) the apparent heir of the 77plus old Vajpayee is hawkish on relations with Pakistan and has always been a hard-line crusader of the Hindu renaissance of the BJP. Advani is known as an ultra-rightist Hindu with criminal record of anti ï¿½ minority policies ever since the dawn of Independence from the British Empire in 1947. A case of his knot with a criminal assault on the Founder of Pakistan, Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah, by now is known worldwide. His part in the wrecking the fï¿½ted Babari Mosque in 1990 ï¿½ which took over 2000 lives along with the obliteration of chattels worth billions – and his bolshie blessings to Chief Minister Modi of Gujarat for the anti-Muslim posture is well-documented. His elevation to the office of Deputy PM is, thus a symptom of India’s glide towards fanaticism, loutishness and stiffness chiefly towards the minorities and to be more explicit towards the Muslims. This is certainly a perilous development for peace in the region because Advani has always been antagonistic towards Pakistan and to quote an instance it was he who had sabotaged the Agra Summit by axing the joint declaration. The BJP has ostensi! bly learnt no lesson from its mortifying defeat in the State Elections wherein it was badly routed by the voters who had reacted sharply against Advani’s extremist policies towards Christians and Muslims on the one hand and against Pakistan on the other.
With Advani as No. 2 of Vajpayee, the ferocious Indian designs- prompted by the dynamics of war hysteria – unleashed in the first instance by the lashing tongues of the Indian hard liners are now well identified to the judicious world.
The Indian electronic media ï¿½ once personally controlled by Advani as Minister for Information in the Morarji Desai’s regime – is carrying on hostile propaganda crusade against Pakistan. It is in fact a cognisant strive ï¿½ authored by Advani & Co – to swell the war hysteria through the utterances of the partakers of news and current affairs slots of the Indian media who have been breathing fire and spitting malevolence and venom. India is out to malign Pakistan in one way or the other. This typical Indian tendency based on acrimony was climaxed to a large – scale deployment of the Indian troops along the borders of Pakistan and the LoC in Kashmir.
Buoyed by the results of coercive diplomacy, India continues with its stonewalling tactics, with Vajpayee ï¿½ once again – responding unfavorably to Pakistan’s truthful offer for withdrawal of troops to their peace-time locations to de-escalate the tense situation.
At the same time, Vajpayee’s ruling out of a war with Pakistan is nullified by his corollary that the Indian army will not be withdrawn from the borders. The hundreds of thousands of troops, deployed along the frontiers cannot be measured as a statement of peace by any stretch of imagination. War, even if not underway, is predictable as long as the armies are in a pose of conflict. Only the withdrawal of troops can symbolize the return of peace, which will be far more eloquent than any avowal.
The other point Vajpayee has lately made that he was willing to hold talks with Pakistan on all issues including Jammu and Kashmir affected a similar contradiction. The stipulation that “I need the right atmosphere and cross-border terrorism must end first” knocks out whatever hopes were raised for resumption of a dialogue. It was no more than a rehash of what he has been saying for the last several months, except that it was accompanied with a watered down promise of’ no war’. The most that can be read into Vajpayee’s sheaf of promises is that he is sending a message to Washington that all is quiet along the border and war was not on the cards at present. Probably this is in response to the calls by US and the caucus of world’s eight most powerful states for talks to resolve the disputes between India and Pakistan. It is unlikely that he really meant what he said in astonishingly agreeable tones.
Now it is obvious from the induction of Advani as his second-in-command (almost the defacto PM) who does not leave a jiffy to malign Pakistan one way or the other. How can one believe the adamant New Delhi warlords who are out to put the peace in the South Asian region in peril through their acts and deeds? Yet the verity remains intact that India can no more hoodwink the world which is ï¿½ perceptibly ï¿½ now vociferously aware of India’s malevolent designs towards Pakistan especially in the wake Advani’s elevation, which candidly depicts India’s hostilities as well as vogue for hegemony ‘ to do anything ‘ even if a big cataclysm is in the offing.
The author is a noted journalist, political analyst and ex-Director News Pakistan TV.