In response to article published on “India yet to decide on UNHRC resolutions”.
Posted on March 10th, 2014

By Bernard Wijeyasingha

Indian political leaders have demonstrated that they lack any vision and by that I go far back as Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru who upon independence took India into a massive Socialist society. Fearing the effects of Colonialism Nehru closed India’s economy to the world and created her own industries which on the surface looked sound. But as the years went by and these industries functioned without any competition that an open market would give they either ended up producing shabby products that went unquestioned or went bankrupt only to be bailed out by the government. Even the war with China was a shabby job for New Delhi failed to send her air force to defend the ground troops in time. The Chinese invaded India and then withdrew thereby winning the war by de facto. This singular act as plagued Indian politics to this day as China continues to claim Arunachal Pradesh and the province of Ladakh as her territory. She also claimed the independent nation of Sikkim as part of Tibet and by that part of China.

New Delhi did not learn her lesson till her economy almost collapsed in the early 1990”²s under the Bharata Janata Party. It was only then that India opened her economy. This in the face that China with the visit from the US President Nixon opened hers in 1979 and was already a thriving economy. Sri Lanka opened hers in 1977 just before the war on Tamil terrorism started and even during the war Sri Lanka’s standard of living managed to be higher than any other South Asian nation.

New Delhi’s leadership continued to suffer under Indira Gandhi who in 1971 engaged in splitting Pakistan which cut Pakistan’s power by half but also created two new problems for India which was realized in the coming years. Then in 1974 with the help of the former Soviet Union India acquired the technology to build a nuclear bomb and detonated it. Again this only led the region to become more unstable as Pakistan soon reciprocated by getting the same technology from China and became nuclear weapons rival to India. At this time the cold war was at its zenith where the US and the Soviet Empire were at logger heads and the Soviet Empire and Maoist China were equally at logger heads.

By dividing Pakistan India cut her power by half and after India exploded her first nuclear device in 1974 created a nuclear rival to her west and an illegal immigration problem from Bangladesh. Which one is worse depends on how one views it. The western problem resulted in a perpetual cold war in the Sub continent thereby draining the resources of both Pakistan and India. To her east the massive illegal Muslim migrants from Bangladesh has destabilized the North Eastern Indian states where Assam, Nagaland, Mizoram and Manipur all have secessionist movements due to New Delhi’s apathetic approach of the border problems with Bangladesh.

Indira Gandhi’s leadership eventually led to her enacting an emergency act where she used the powers derived from that act to imprison her political opponents, force sterilization on the lower caste men and allowing elections to be suspended and civil liberties to be curbed. For much of the Emergency, most of Gandhi’s political opponents were imprisoned and the press was censored between 1975 and 1977. New Delhi used the fear tactic of China taking over Sikkim to convince the current government to vote to join the Indian union. Though it was a success it also gave impetus to India as an aggressive power willing to either divide or take over her neighbors.

After a second election Indira Gandhi took on the Khalistan movement to secede from India. Brindanwale the Sikh leader finally took refuge in the Golden Temple of the city of Amritsar where it is the custom anyone who takes refuge in Sikhism’s Vatican will get the full protection and no harm will come to them. Operation blue star launched by Indira Gandhi made a mockery of it, killed Brindanwale and his followers along with a few hundred innocent pilgrims in that temple. The operation had two components: Operation Metal, confined to the Harmandir Sahib complex, and Operation Shop, which raided the Punjabi countryside to capture any suspects. Following it, Operation Woodrose was launched to thoroughly scan the Punjab countryside. The operation was carried out by Indian Army troops with tanks, artillery, helicopters, armoured vehicles, and chemical weapons. Actual casualty figures given by Kuldip Singh Brar put the number of deaths among the Indian army at 83 and injuries at 220. According to the official estimate, 492 civilians were killed, though some independent claims run as high as 5,000. This was in June 1984.

Indira Gandhi in 1982 had already started training Jaffna Tamil youth across India to become the foot soldiers of a terrorist war against Sri Lanka. One would conclude that this followed similar lines of Islamabad in forming terrorist outfits to take on India. Finally Indira Gandhi paid with her life for operation blue star when her Sikh body guards killed her. This led to a nation wide atrocities against the Sikh community by the Indian Hindus. During this time the crisis in Kashmir of seceding from India grew. Some analysts have suggested that the number of Indian troops in Jammu and Kashmir is close to 600,000 although estimates vary and the Indian government refuses to release official figures. Over time the Indian government has increasingly relied on military presence and a curtailment of civil liberties to achieve its aims in Kashmir. The military has committed massive human rights violations. For most of the history of the insurgency the government paid little attention to the political views of the Kashmiri people. The government would often dissolve assemblies, arrest elected politicians and impose president’s rule. The government also rigged elections in 1987. In recent times there have been signs that the government is taking local elections more seriously. The government has also funneled development aid to Kashmir and Kashmir has now become the biggest per capita receiver of Federal aid.

Regarding the North Indian state of Assam The conflict started in the 1970s. It stems from tension between Assamese and alleged neglect and internal colonization by the Indian government with its federal center in Delhi. Additionally, the state is rich in oil resources. The Assamese Separatist Movement alone has taken a toll of 12,000 ULFA (United Liberation front of Assam) members and 18,000 others. The secessionist goals of the separatist movement in Assam have lacked popular support, with most Assamese sympathizing with the separatist groups but not empathizing with their goals. ULFA founded at the site of Rang Ghar on April 7, 1979, a historic structure from the Ahom kingdom. Military operations against it by the Indian Army that began in 1990 continues till present. In the past two decades some 30,000 people have died in the clash between the rebels and the government. Though separatist sentiments deems strong, , it is disputed if the secessionist movement enjoys popular support any longer. On the other hand, strong Assamese nationalism can be found in Assamese literature and culture. The neglect and exploitation by the Indian state are common refrains in the Assamese-language media.] There are instances when even the ULFA leaders are seen as saviors.

In Gujarat The 2002 Gujarat violence, also known as the Gujarat pogrom was a period of inter-communal violence in the Indian state of Gujarat which lasted for approximately three days. Following the initial incident there were further outbreaks of violence in Ahmedabad which lasted for approximately three weeks; statewide, there were further outbreaks of mass killings against the minority Muslim population that lasted about three months. The burning of a train, for which 31 Muslims were convicted, in Godhra on 27 February 2002 which caused the deaths of 58 people, which included Hindu activists returning from Ayodhya, is believed to have triggered the violence. Some commentators, however, hold the view that the attacks had been pre-planned, were well orchestrated, and that the attack on the train was in fact a “staged trigger” for what was actually premeditated violence.
According to the official figures, the riots resulted in the deaths of 790 Muslims and 254 Hindus; 2,500 people were injured non-fatally, and 223 more were reported missing. Other sources estimate that up to 2000 Muslims died. There were instances of rape, children being burned alive, and widespread looting and destruction of property. Chief Minister Narendra Modi has been accused of initiating and condoning the violence, as have police and government officials who allegedly directed the rioters and gave lists of Muslim-owned properties to them. In 2012, Modi was cleared of complicity in the violence by a Special Investigation Team appointed by the Supreme Court of India.

New Delhi’s incompetency can best be surmised by the fact that India is the world’s largest recipient of foreign aid since her independence and to date has nothing to show for it. In spit of hundreds of Billions of dollars pumped into India by the IMF and the World bank India’s slums which did not exist during the British raj, continue to grow. The slum in Mumbai is the largest in Asia. The corruption in India is at all levels from the highest echelons to the street sweeper corruption and her unbeatable Caste system has created a poisonous social brew of eternal poverty and disenfranchisement to her One Billion three hundred million people. India continues to grow at an unsustainable level of 15 million people each year.

When the Soviet Union collapsed in the 1980”²s the central Asian Muslim nations turned to India because at that time China was still an enemy with the former Soviet Empire, India was the strongest alley of the former Soviet Empire, had the second largest Muslim population and claimed to be the largest Democracy in the world. Instead of taking this golden opportunity to truly rise as a regional power New Delhi instead turned to the US to sign a broad based alliance which included massive technology transfers, military enhancement, to a slew of other state of the art technology issues which to this day has still to materialize. Instead Russia and China in the 1990s decided to bury their differences and form and alliance which only grew with the formation of Russia’s Collective Security Treaty Organization and China’s Shanghai Cooperation Organization. Now in the Security Council both nations work in tandem against the US UK and France on any issues that would be harmful to either of them in any way. Again New Delhi made a grave geopolitical mistake.

India’s proxy war with Colombo ultimately failed when in 2009 Sri Lanka’s military defeated Prabhakaran and the LITE. Yet India continues her crusade against Sri Lanka. She hosts both TESO (Tamil Eelam Supporters Organization) and TELO (Tamil Eelam Liberation Organization) to this very day as she joins with the UK and US in leveling human right resolutions on Colombo.

Mr. Bernard Wijeyasingha

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