By Ajit Chak: Backed by the USA and Pakistan one of the most notorious figures of the Afghan jihad, Gulbuddin Hekmatyar a former Afghan Prime Minister and Taliban warlord is back in Afghanistan and it is bad news for India. Even as India focuses on minor issues like pellet guns and the fiery speeches of its leaders promising a befitting reply to Pakistan a man who was the darling of the CIA and the ISI is now back in Afghanistan after having brokered a peace deal with the government. Hekmatyar is none other than the dreaded Taliban commander who send in thousands of Afghan mujahidin into Kashmir in 1990 at the behest of the then Pakistani regime led by Benazir Bhutto and created the turmoil and unrest that led to the genocide of Kashmiri Hindus. Over five Lakh Hindus were forced out of Kashmir in a matter of weeks. The unrest that followed could be quelled with the support of the local people only. Today it is not clear who they will support after 70 days of curfew in the state.
In case relocating Hekmatyar back to the Afghan state is part of a big gamble by the Pakistanis to drive a wedge between India and Afghanistan then the Pakistanis may have just succeeded. They are succeeding on other fronts as well and with the support of big brother China it is likely that they will continue to gather support in the sub-continent against India. IndiaÔÇÖs relations with its neighbours are not exactly great at the moment. The nation is seeing a bout of sour relations with Nepal, with Pakistan, with Myanmar and even Sri Lanka. It is only with Bangladesh that some bonhomie exists and that too as long as the present premier is in position.
So has the BJP been rendered ineffective by the terms and conditions of the alliance with the PDP, it may be noted that no BJP MLA has an important portfolio under his belt. Also are they focussing on too many micro issues, like pellet guns and stone throwing and not taking action to restore confidence among the locals.
Who is Hekmatyar, with the face of a Greek Philosopher he hides the soul of the barbarian warlord of Afghanistan, his life has been marked with contacts between the dreaded former Soviet KGB, the Pakistan ISI and the CIA who made the Taliban look like the good guys in the eyes of the world. He is ruthless and he is ambitious. Apparently the present Afghan government needs his ethnic and tribe equations to shore up their flailing strength otherwise they would never have agreed to a deal with the devil. The moot question is how India fares in this entire adventure?
It was on September when a draft peace accord was signed in Kabul between the Afghan government and the infamous Mujahideen group Hezb-e-Islami of Gulbuddin which means that the latter must bid a farewell to arms and become a mainstream political party.
GulbuddinÔÇÖs expertise lies however in destabilising Kashmir. While Sushma Swaraj may ask Nawaz Sharif to stop daydreaming about Paradise on Earth and Modi may bring in water politics into this new equation, it is quite likely that Pakistan and Hekmatyar may be preparing a new nightmare for Kashmir.
Rahul Kaul the national coordinator of the Panun Kashmir Movement in India sums up the situation in Kashmir in a nutshell. The BJP is silent on the issue of Kashmiri Hindus, he says as it has been sidelined in the Assembly by the PDP and the PDP does not want the issue to be settled. On the other hand the PDP is known to be pro separatist and pro stone thrower, he says. The state is poised for a major explosion and the aspirations of those who voted for the BJP are being neglected.
The Indian government has to immediately embark upon a campaign to win the loyalty of the local people of Kashmir so that men like Hekmatyar do not get a chance to play their games there. Fancy speeches are pass├®. For the Modi government it is time for action and that action has to be very comprehensive. The government has to display to the people that it is still in control. For that it has to impose governorÔÇÖs rule and bring in a new face as well.