The Balakot air strike by the Indian Air Force will not persuade the Pakis from exporting terror to Kashmir.
This morning, the Pakistanis claimed that fighter jets of the Indian Air Force intruded their territory and dropped some ‘payloads’ in a hurry.
Further, the IAF said, the ‘payloads’ were 1000 kilogram bombs which smashed the terror factories into pieces.
Please note that this terrorist organization had attacked a bus carrying CRPF soldiers on the Jammu-Srinagar highway. As a result, 44 policemen were martyred in that suicide attack.
As the day progressed, it emerged that 12 Mirage-2000 fighters had entered the Pakistani airspace and bombed the Jaish-e-Mohammad terror camps in Balakot, Chakothi, and Muzaffarabad.
One source even claimed that the Indian Air Force even went up to the Khyber Pakhtunwa province to drop its bombs on the terror camps. This province is deep inside the Pakistani territory and is very close to the Afghanistan border.
Perhaps we would never know the exact truth but by these bombings, India has kind of avenged the Pulwama terror attack.
In my opinion, the Balakot strike will have a limited effect. The Pakistanis will shift their terror camps deeper in their territory and will also stage a few ambushes on the Line of Control. In short, the situation will be back to square one after these air strikes.
To solve the Pakistani terrorism problem, we need to choke that country of its water and financially.
Cancel the Indus Water Treaty
This treaty was signed between India and Pakistan in 1960 and helped both the nations to divide their water resources.
India got the waters of Ravi, Sutlej and Beas rivers while Pakistan received the waters of Indus, Jhelum and Chenab. The total volume of water that Pakistan got was 1450 lac acre feet.
One acre foot water means a layer of one-foot deep water spread over one acre of land.
Interestingly, of the 1450 lac acre feet of water that Pakistan receives every year, 1100 lac acre feet come from India. This means that 80% of the Pakistani water in its rivers comes from India.
It would be in our interest to stop the Indian portion of the Indus, Jhelum and Chenab waters if we want this terrorism to stop. This is a non-violent way to persuade Pakistan to mend its ways.
Critics say that by doing this we would invite interference from the World Bank and other multilateral bodies. This is patently incorrect.
During the signing of this pact, the World Bank had offered to mediate in case a dispute arose between the two countries. It does not have the power to decide on the issue. So, India can simply walk away from the Indus Water Treaty by saying that Pakistan is an unfriendly country.
Actually, the Treaty does allow either country to disassociate with it if the other country adopts a hostile attitude. This condition is set in the preamble of the Indus Water treaty.
If India does walk away from this pact, then it will hurt the Pakistani economy real badly. According to the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics, the share of agriculture to the economy is 24%. More than half of the labor force of Pakistan is employed in the agriculture sector.
What about the increase in import duties?
A few weeks back, the Indian government had withdrawn the Most Favored Nation Status from Pakistan and increased the import duties to 200%.
A little bit of analysis shows that this would hardly affect the Pakistani economy. Exports to India constitute just 1.6% of the Pakistani trade basket so the hike in import duties doesn’t account much.
Hence more needs to be done to weaken Pakistan financially.
It is India’s war
It is time we realized that we have to fight our war on terrorism ourselves. No country will directly support us and it will be futile to expect the United States to declare Pakistan a terrorist country. China is a staunch friend of Pakistan and will do everything to make India uncomfortable.
Pakistan wants to bleed India of a thousand cuts and it is time we realized this. General Pervez Musharraf said a few days back that Pakistan needs to attack India with 50 atom bombs to stop any potential attack. He clearly mirrors the attitude of a enemy nation called Pakistan.
The Balakot air strike may or may not dissuade Pakistan from its terror activities in the valley. But it will definitely demoralize the common Pakistanis. Their faith in their army and the government will be shaken and probably this may translate into a counter-attack from Pakistan. It is highly probable that a few attacks on the security forces might also happen in the valley.
We as a country should think of several alternative measures, civil as well as military, to stop Pakistan’s terrorist activities.