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Wake up Now ! جاگو ، جاگو ، جاگو

Wake up Pakistan ! Presently the Muslim societies are in a state of ideological confusion and flux. Materialism, terrorism,...

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Scale of Challenges of Terrorism

PAKISTAN’S internal security situation has shown considerable improvement over the past few months. That has not only created a sense of optimism across Pakistan but also boosted the confidence of law enforcement agencies in urban areas.

The killings of some high-profile leaders of Lashkar-i-Jhangvi (LJ) in Quetta, Karachi and Punjab, since the start of 2015, and extensive search-and-hunt operations against militants have also lowered the threat of sectarian violence, at least for the moment.

Military operations have significantly weakened militants’ infrastructure and networks in the North Waziristan and Khyber agencies. Most militants from these two regions have either relocated to Afghanistan or other parts of Pakistan, including neighbouring agencies of Fata.

Pakistan must continue disrupting the terror network and not allow the groups the space and time to reorganise.
Yet, militants’ presence in parts of Fata and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa poses a political challenge and security threat. For instance, militants continue to show their presence in all of Fata’s tribal agencies. According to data provided in the Pakistan Institute of Peace Studies database on security, between May and July this year, militants carried out 39 terrorist attacks in Fata, including eight attacks each in Bajaur and North Waziristan agencies, seven attacks each in Mohmand and South Waziristan agencies, six in Khyber Agency and three attacks in Kurram Agency. In Orakzai Agency, where no terrorist attack took place during these three months, militants tried to regroup during the last month but security forces thwarted the plan.

Similarly, although terrorist attacks have decreased in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, districts of the province bordering North and South Waziristan agencies remain vulnerable to terrorist activities. It is feared that militants from North Waziristan and Khyber agencies have also relocated to these areas, where they could carry out attacks in the coming weeks and months, mainly in Bannu and DI Khan.

The pace of improvement in Balochistan is slow. Some security analysts believe that the government’s amnesty scheme, which offers pardons, financial incentives and rehabilitation to those who quit violence, will help bring the situation under control. The provincial government also seems serious in starting a process of political reconciliation in the province. But there are certain hurdles along the way, which can only be removed through concerted efforts. A high-level delegation of the Balochistan government recently met the Khan of Kalat in London, but failed to persuade him to end his self-imposed exile and return to Pakistan. Later, it was reported in the media that the Khan of Kalat said that only the Baloch Grand Jirga had the right to ask for his return. Some media reports indicated that the Balochistan government was mulling over using that option, too.

Karachi has been comparatively peaceful in recent weeks and months. Apparently, surgical operations against militants and criminal elements have significantly weakened the infrastructure of terrorists and criminal gangs. According to a report compiled by the Sindh police and submitted to the provincial home department, “the murders and targeted killings in Karachi are all-time lowest [sic].” On the other hand, the political crisis continues in Karachi and Sindh, which does not bode well for the future of security and peace there.

While the killing of Malik Ishaq was described by many as a severe blow to the LJ, it also indicated that the Punjab government, which has long been criticised for its alleged inaction against sectarian groups, is becoming serious in eliminating militant groups operating in the province.

Malik and his aides’ death will not only weaken the LJ in Punjab and Balochistan, but also affect the operations of the Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), Al Qaeda and Jamaatul Ahrar in Punjab with whom the group had operational nexus. The LJ was already facing problems in Balochistan after the killing of Usman Saifullah Kurd, who headed another lethal faction of the LJ that targets Hazara Shia Muslims. The group is now headed by the second-in-command of Kurd, Dawood Badini, who has been in hiding for a long time. Two main factions of the LJ in Karachi — the Asif Chotoo and the Naeem Bukhari groups — have also been weakened mainly due to security operations. But the history of the LJ suggests that it has many tactics to survive, including a political cover. Yet one thing is certain: it will not be as strong in the future as it was in the past.

The military operations in Fata have significantly damaged the TTP. Major sections of the group, including its splinter groups, have relocated to Afghanistan. There is no probability that the group will be allowed to regroup in Pakistan. However, it will continue to create trouble in Pakistan’s areas bordering on Afghanistan, as well as in other parts of the country through its small pockets and allied groups.

Many groups operate with the name of Jundullah in Pakistan, including one main group, which is operating in Karachi, espousing a strong anti-Western and anti-Shia agenda. The group can be called the transformed face of the LJ, which has ultra sectarian tendencies. The groups are inspired by the self-styled Islamic State (IS) but have collaborations with Al Qaeda and factions of the TTP. Jammatul Ahrar is another group that will remain a threat for some time in the future. If it pledges allegiance to IS, it might become more relevant mainly in Afghanistan where inspiration and influence of IS is growing, and the state is still weak.

If IS is a growing threat for Afghanistan, Al Qaeda could pose a threat of similar intensity for Pakistan. Led by Asim Umar, the Al Qaeda Indian Subcon­tinent (AQIS) is absorbing the human resources of the fragmented TTP and Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan factions, and it has the operational capabilities and resources for launching attacks in the region.

Unlike IS, AQIS has no ambitions to capture territories and establish its rule. But the group is certainly in search of safe havens where it can restructure itself and execute its terror plans. This is the major challenge for Pakistan: continue disrupting the terror network and not allow the groups the space and time to reorganise.
By Muhammad Amir Rana
The writer is a security analyst.
http://www.dawn.com/news/1199303/scale-of-the-challenge

Monday, August 3, 2015

Fitnah

Image result for fitnah quotes
فتنہ کیا ہے؟جو بھی ہے، ہے بہت بُری شے۔ کوئی وجہ تو ہوگی کہ عالم کے پروردگار نے اسے قتل سے بھی سنگین تر قرار دیا ہے۔ [مزید اردو  آخر میں ملاحضہ کریں ]
Fitna (or fitnah, pl. fitan; Arabic: فتنة , فتن‎: "temptation, trial; sedition, civil strife") is an Arabic word with extensive connotations of trial, affliction, or distress. A word freighted with important historical implications, it is also widely used in modern Arabic.


Persecution
Fitna as persecution appears in several of the verses commanding Muslims to fight the unbelievers (specifically referring to the Meccan polytheists who had persecuted Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) and his early followers, thus leading to the hijra). For example, in Qur'an 2:191, the command to fight is justified on the grounds that "persecution (al-fitnatu) is worse than slaying." Similarly, in Qur'an 2:193, Muslims are forbidden from fighting unbelievers around the Holy Mosque in Mecca unless the unbelievers attack first, in which case Muslims are to fight "until there is no persecution (fitnatun) and the religion is God's." The hijra is mentioned in Qur'an 16:110 as having occurred because of the persecution believers had suffered in Mecca. Other examples are Qur'an 85:10, which promises the chastisement of Hell for those who have persecuted Muslims, and Qur'an 4:101, which provides that one's daily required prayer may be shortened if, when on a journey, one fears that the unbelievers may attack if one remains in a place long enough to complete the full prayer.



Dissension/sedition
In Qur'an 3:7, the Qur'an itself is described as having "clear revelations – they are the substance of the Book – and others (which are) allegorical," and then the Qur'an characterizes those who are unsteady and who do not have firm faith as desiring dissension in the community through their pursuit of interpretations of the "allegorical" verses of the Qur'an. A set of occurrences of the root related to dissension or sedition occurs in Quran 9:47–49, where those who say they are believers, but show themselves reluctant to follow certain of God's commands, are described as seeking "sedition" among the community.



Trial
Many instances of the root as "trial" appear throughout the Qur'an. This sense of the root bears the further sense of a "tribulation" or "difficulty" in such verses as, for example: Qur'an 20:40, where Moses, after killing a man in Egypt, was "tried with a heavy trial" by being forced to flee and to live among the Midians for many years; and Qur'an 22:11, where some believers are characterized as worshipping God "upon a narrow marge," since they are happy so long as their life is relatively secure and easy, but as soon as they experience a trial, they turn away from God.



However, the root in other verses carries a sense of "trial" as simply a kind of test of a person's commitment to their faith (without necessarily implying that the testing results from something bad happening, as the sense of trial as "tribulation" might bear). For example, Qur'an 6:53 says, in part, "And even so do We try some of them by others." Things widely-recognized as good things in life may serve as trials, as Qur'an 8:28 and 64:15 make clear by describing one's own wealth and children as trials. Qur'an 39:49 also carries this sense of trial by something good; there, God's own "boon" (or "blessing") is described as a trial for certain people. Again, in Qur'an 72:14–15, God will give those idolaters who decide to "tread the right path" an abundance of good "that We may test them thereby," to see whether they will turn away from God once they have obtained his favor or whether they will be steadfast in faith.

Trials may also result from things revealed by God that some may find difficult to accept. For example, Qur'an 17:60 describes the revelation of the "Cursed Tree" as "an ordeal for mankind." Another example of this sense is Qur'an 74:31, where the number of the angels who guard the Fire has been "made a stumbling-block for those who disbelieve ... and that those in whose hearts there is disease, and disbelievers, may say: What meaneth Allah by this similitude?"

Temptation
The root also bears the sense of "temptation," as in Qur'an 57:14, where those who were hypocritical in their faith will be turned away and told by the steadfast believers, from whom they are separated, "ye tempted one another, and hesitated, and doubted, and vain desires beguiled you till the ordinance of Allah came to pass; and the deceiver deceived you concerning Allah." In Qur'an 20:90, Aaron is said to have warned the Israelites, when Moses had left them to meet with God for forty days, that the Golden Calf was only something they were being tempted by (or, in Pickthall's translation, "seduced with"). Harut and Marut warn the people of Babylon, in Qur'an 2:102, "We are only a temptation, therefore disbelieve not," although the warning proved to be ineffective for some.
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فتنہ کیا ہے؟جو بھی ہے، ہے بہت بُری شے۔ کوئی وجہ تو ہوگی کہ عالم کے پروردگار نے اسے قتل سے بھی سنگین تر قرار دیا ہے۔
بچپن سے علماء کی زبانی یہ سنتے آئے ہیں کہ وہ ہر فتنے کے خلاف سینہ سپر ہوگئے۔وہ اپنے اسلاف کے کارنامے بیان کرتے ہوئے فخرو انبساط کے ساتھ بتاتے ہیں کہ انہوں نے فلاں فلاں فتنوں کی سر کوبی کی۔بعض روایات ہیں جو بتاتی ہیں کہ قربِ قیامت میں فتنے اٹھ کھڑے ہوں گے۔آج بہت سے لوگ فتنے کی ٹوپی اٹھاتے اورحسب خواہش کسی کے سر پر رکھ دیتے ہیں۔اس کے بعد سارا زورِ قلم اور طاقتِ لسانی اس کی سر کوبی کے لیے وقف ہو جاتی ہے۔سوال یہ ہے کہ جس کے خلاف ساری دنیا اٹھ کھڑی ہوئی ہے، یہ فتنہ آ خر ہے کیا؟
جس اقدام سے زمین فساد سے بھر جائے‘ جو تقریر زندگی کو خطرات میں ڈا ل دے‘ جو تحریر سماج میں خوف بو دے ،جو لوگوں کے مابین فصیلیں کھڑی کر دے،وہ سب فتنہ ہیں۔یہ سر گرمیاں کسی عنوان سے بھی ہوسکتی ہیں۔تقریر کا بظاہرموضوع اصلاح ہو سکتا ہے۔تحریر ممکن ہے کہ امتِ مسلمہ کا درد لیے ہوئے ہو۔جلسہ جلوس ممکن ہے مذہبی حوالے کے ساتھ ہو،اگر اُس کا نتیجہ فساد ہے تو اسے فتنہ قرار دینے میں مجھے کوئی تردد نہیں۔آپ کی اجازت سے، میں اس فہرست میں مزیداضافہ کر تا ہوں۔ اقتدار اگر عوام میں اضطراب پید اکر رہا ہے اور ایک اعیانی طبقے کے مفادات کا محافظ ہے تو وہ بھی فتنہ ہے۔سیاسی جماعت اگر مال دار طبقے کو مواقع فراہم کر رہی ہے کہ وہ لوٹ کھسوٹ کا بازار گرم کیے رکھے اور اس طبقے کو احتساب سے محفوظ بناتی ہے تو بھی فتنہ ہے۔یہ نتیجہ ہے جو طے کرے گا کہ کیا کام فتنہ ہے اور کیا اصلاح کا سبب۔
چند سال ہوئے میرا فیصل آ بادجا نا ہوا۔ایک مجلس میں ایک صاحب ِ علم کی دینی خدمات کی تحسین ہوئی تو ایک مذہبی راہنما کو اچھا نہ لگا۔ان کی باری آئی تو انہوں نے اس شخصیت کو ایک فتنہ قرار دیا اور بطور ثبوت ان سے بعض ایسے خیالات منسوب کیے جو یقیناً فتنے کا سبب تھے۔میرے لیے یہ ایک انکشاف تھا کیونکہ میں اس صاحبِ علم کے خیالات سے پوری طرح آگاہ تھا۔سرِ مجلس میں نے ان سے گزارش کی کہ وہ میری مدد کریں اور مجھے بتائیں کہ یہ باتوں موصوف نے کہاں لکھیں یا بیان کیں جن کا انتساب،آپ نے ان کی طرف کیا۔میرے اصرار کے با وجود، وہ کوئی حوالہ نہیں دے سکے۔یہ خلوت کی کوئی مجلس نہیں تھی۔اس میں بہت سے لوگ شریک تھے۔میں آ ج تک سوچتا ہوں کہ جو لوگ اس سے پہلے اٹھ گئے اورانہوں نے مذہبی راہنماکی رائے پر اعتبار کرلیا، تو اس کذب اور اس کے نتیجے میں پیدا ہونے والے ممکنہ فتنے کا ذمہ دار کون ہے ؟ کیایہ طرزِ عمل خود فتنہ نہیں ہے؟بغیر تحقیق سنی سنائی بات کو پھیلانا اور جان بوجھ کر ایک بات کو غلط مفہوم دینا کیا فتنہ نہیں؟ان سے پوچھیے تو یہ بتائیں گے کہ وہ ایک فتنے کا تعاقب کر رہے ہیں۔ وہ اپنے ارد گرد نظر دوڑائیں تو انہیں معلوم ہو کہ فتنہ تو ان کے جلو میں چل رہا ہے۔
فتنے کا پہلا ہدف امن ہو تا ہے۔فتنہ سماج کو خوف میں مبتلا کر تا ہے۔دہشت اس کا حاصل ہے۔اصلاح کے نام پر کھڑے ہونے والوں کو سوچنا چاہیے کہ ان کانام اگر دہشت کی علامت ہے یا لوگ ان سے خوف کھانے لگے ہیں توپھر وہ صاحبانِ اصلاح میں سے نہیں۔لوگ کہتے ہیں : دنیا آج اسلام سے خوف زدہ ہے۔ میں سوچتا ہوں کیا انہوں نے کبھی اپنے اس جملے پر غور کیا؟ بطور مسلمان،یہ بات میرے لیے باعثِ تشویش ہو نی چاہیے کہ دنیا میرے مذہب سے خوف کھاتی ہے۔میری کا میابی یہ ہے کہ لوگ میرے مذہب سے امن کا پیغام لیں۔ایک مسلمان کا نام آئے تو لوگوں کو سلامتی کا احساس ہو۔ ہجرت کی شب تک،میرے رسول ﷺ تو مکہ میں امن اور سلامتی کی علامت تھے۔چند فتنہ پرورسردار تھے جو اپنے مفادات کے لیے لوگوں کو ان کے خلاف اکساتے تھے۔ورنہ ایک عام آ دمی تو ان سے محبت کرتا تھا۔وہ جانتا تھا کہ میرا مال اور میری جان اگر کسی کے پاس محفوظ ہے تو وہ یہی ہستی ہے۔آپﷺ کو اپنی سماجی ذمہ داریوں کا اتنا احساس تھا کہ تلواروں کے سائے میں رخصت ہوئے لیکن سیدنا علیؓ کو اپنے بستر پہ چھوڑا کہ بہت سی امانتیں آپ کے پاس رکھی تھیں۔ایسے رسول کی امت سے لوگ خوف کھانے لگیں تو یہ بات باعثِِ فخرنہیں، باعثِ تشویش ہو نی چاہیے۔
فتنہ ،میرا خیال ہے کہ نظریات سے نہیں، رویے سے پیدا ہوتا ہے‘ الاّ یہ کہ نظریہ تشدد کی دعوت دے۔جیسے ایک دور میں اشتراکی تحریک تھی۔ماؤ،لینن سب تشدد کو تبدیلی کے لیے ناگزیرقرار دیتے تھے۔مذہب کو بھی جب ایک انقلابی تحریک کے روپ میں پیش کیا گیا تو اس سے تشدد نے جنم لیا۔جب تک مذہب اپنے صحیح تناظر میں بیان ہو تا رہا ،اس سے امن وابستہ تھا۔بدھ مت کی مثال ہمارے سامنے ہے جس کی امن پسندی کے بارے میں دوسری رائے نہیں رہی۔اُس کے پیرو کاروں نے جب اسے حقوق کی ایک تحریک بنا یا تو برما سے تھائی لینڈ تک تشدد پھیل گیا۔تحریکیں جذبات سے کھیلتی ہیں۔اجتماعی امور میں تحریکیت نے ہمیشہ تشدد کو فروغ دیا۔ساری تحریکی شاعری دیکھ لیجیے،اشتراکیت کے نام پر ہو یااسلام کے نام پر،موت کو گلیمرائز کرتی سنائی دیتی ہے۔
پاکستانی سماج میں اقتدار، سیاست، مذہب،ہر شے فتنہ پرور ہاتھوں میں یرغمال بنتی جا رہی ہے۔یہ ایک دن میں نہیں ہوا۔اس کی ایک تاریخ ہے۔لوگوں کو ابھی تک اندازہ نہیں ہے کہ انہوں نے جو بیج بویا تھا، کیسے آج ایک تن آور درخت بن چکا جس کی جڑیں دور دور تک پھیل گئی ہیں۔گفتگو کا آہنگ تک بدل گیا ہے۔ لاؤڈ سپیکر کے با وجود ، خطیبِ شہر، معلوم ہو تا ہے کہ زبان سے نہیں پورے وجود سے کلام کر رہا ہے۔اس کے بعد تقریر میںکیسی حلاوت اور کیسی مٹھاس۔سچ یہ ہے کہ ایک مدت ہوگئی ایسی تقریر سنے جو کانوں کے لیے امن کاپیغام ہو۔ جو خطیب کانوں کو امن نہ دے سکے،وہ جانوں کو کیا امن دے گا؟اہلِ سیاست کا معاملہ بھی مختلف نہیں۔ٹی وی ٹاک شوز میں ایک دوسرے سے یوںہم کلام ہو تے ہیں کہ زبانیں ان کے قد سے لمبی ہو جا تی ہیں۔
یہ معاشرہ آج فتنے کی زد میں ہے۔فتنہ ہوگا تو امن نہیں ہو گا۔حکمران فتنہ جُو کوختم کر نا چاہتے ہیںلیکن ان عوامل کو نظر اندازکرتے ہیں جوفتنہ پیدا کرتے ہیں۔انسان مشین نہیں ہو تا۔آج چاہیں تووہ ایک معاملے میں عقل سے رجوع کرے اور دوسرے میں دل سے۔کشمیر کے معاملے میں دل سے سوچے اورجب طالبان کے بات آئے تو اپنی لگام عقل کے ہاتھ میں دے دے۔اس ملک میں بسنے والوں کوکوئی ایک راستہ دکھانا ہو گا۔سوچنے کا کام دماغ سے لینا ہے یا دل سے؟دل میں احساس پھوٹتا ہے۔ احساس قوتِ محرکہ ہے‘ لیکن حرکت کب کر نی ہے، اس کا فیصلہ دماغ نے کر نا ہے۔اس کے لیے ان لوگوں کو بدلنا ہوگا جو فتنہ پیدا کرتے ہیں۔اگر سیاست دان، خطیب ِشہر اور ادیب کا لہجہ نہیں بدلے گا توعوامی رویے کیسے بدلیں گے؟ 
آج یہ فتنہ آہستہ آہستہ سب کو اپنی لپیٹ میں لے چکا۔فتنہ پرور بھی اب اس کی زد میں ہیں۔آج خوف سے کوئی آزاد نہیں۔وہ بھی نہیں جو کل دوسروں کو خوف زدہ رکھتے تھے۔فساد خشکی اور تری پر پھیل چکا۔وقت ہے کہ اس فتنہ گری سے اجتماعی تو بہ کی جائے۔جب تک خطیب کے لہجے کی حلاوت نہیں لَوٹتی، فتنہ باقی رہے گا۔
By Khursheed Nadeem
http://m.dunya.com.pk/index.php/author/khursheed-nadeem/2015-08-03

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Pakistan-Afghanistan: Losing the narrative

IN a review of Anatol Lieven’s book Pakistan: A Hard Country, in the Guardian of May 1, 2011, Pankaj Mishra wrote:

“[…] [A]n un-blinkered vision of South Asia would feature a country whose fanatically ideological government in 1998 conducted nuclear tests, threatened its neighbour with all-out war and, four years later, presided over the massacre of 2,000 members of a religious minority. Long embattled against secessionist insurgencies […], the ‘flailing’ state […] now struggles to contain a militant movement in its heartland. It is also where thousands of women are killed every year for failing to bring sufficient dowry and nearly 200,000 farmers have committed suicide in the past decade.” Mishra added: “This country is not Pakistan; it is India.”

The review noted that India has revamped its Western image in a most successful rebranding and through one of “the cleverest PR campaigns.” On the other hand, Pakistan (which both Lieven and Christophe Jaffrelot, in his book The Pakistan Paradox, describe as a country with a surprisingly resilient society and institutions, despite a history of mis-governance) seems to have “lost the narrative”.

The joint statement issued in Ufa is the clearest and most recent confirmation of this unfortunate reality.

Normalisation between Pakistan and India is an imperative. But this can be achieved only if Pakistan pursues an equal relationship with clarity, confidence and persistence.

Normalisation between Pakistan and India can be achieved only if Pakistan pursues an equal relationship.
In recent interactions with India, Pakistan’s political leaders have displayed none of these attributes. They are being played like a fiddle by Modi.

Below are the essential aims Pakistan needs to project and promote vis-à-vis India.

Military balance:

India’s current military build-up poses an ever growing threat to Pakistan’s security and needs to be neutralised, either through arms control or a reciprocal defensive build-up.

To those, like the US, who argue that this is not aimed against Pakistan, it should be sufficient to point out that almost all of India’s capabilities are deployed against Pakistan; its military doctrines are Pakistan-specific; and threats of aggression against Pakistan are persistent and current.

Pakistan should propose bold and specific arms-control measures to India, bilaterally and through multilateral channels. The onus for refusal should rest on New Delhi. Simultaneously, Pakistan cannot be deterred by Western admonishments from taking measures, including short- and long-range missiles, to deter Indian aggression or adventurism.

Kashmir:

Kashmir remains a flashpoint for another Pakistan-India conflict. It cannot be put on a back channel. The ongoing exchanges along the Line of Control can easily escalate. Modi’s policies virtually ensure that, sooner rather than later, there will be another Kashmiri revolt. Islamabad would not be able to restrain support flowing to a new Kashmiri insurgency even if it wanted to. It is for New Delhi to halt its repression and human rights abuses, de-militarise Kashmir and engage in a constructive dialogue with Pakistan. This can avert a Kashmiri eruption and a Pakistan-India crisis.

Terrorism:

Pakistan is the major victim of terrorism in South Asia, with by some accounts 50,000 casualties since the US-led incursion into Afghanistan. Much of this terrorism has been sponsored or supported by India, as admitted recently by BJP leaders. India should not be allowed to adopt the victim’s mantle.

In Ufa, Pakistan should have insisted on reflecting Indian support to the Balochistan Liberation Army (BLA) and the Tehreek-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), insisted on an inquiry into the Samjhauta Express incident, and clarified that the legitimate Kashmiri struggle for self-determination does not amount to terrorism.

Trade and investment:

Trade with India can be mutually beneficial, especially in the exchange of natural resources and food, gas and energy supplies (from Iran and Central Asia). In manufactures, India competes with Pakistan and enjoys the advantage of size and a host of protections.

Similarly, the Indian investment regime is far more restrictive than that of Pakistan. The field has to be levelled before bilateral trade and investment can be fully opened.

Transit:

Transit through Pakistan to central and west Asia is a major Indian priority (although it is building an alternate route from Chabahar in Iran). Pakistan cannot provide such transit to India until the issue of Indian subversion through the BLA and the TTP has been resolved. Even after that, Pakistan should pose two conditions: one, that the upgradation of transit facilities involved should be financed by India or the regional countries involved (as China is doing on the Economic Corridor); and, two, that Pakistan should be accorded reciprocal rights for transit to Nepal and Bangladesh through India.

Water:

Access to water is fast emerging as an existential issue for Pakistan (and for India). To avoid food and ecological disasters, and a possible conflict, it has become vital for the two countries to live up to the principle of the equitable sharing of water enshrined in the Indus Waters Treaty. Pakistan must secure this aim bilaterally and through all available international avenues.

Composite agenda:

It is self-evident that all the issues between Pakistan and India are interlinked and interdependent. Progress on some will facilitate movement on others; and vice versa. The security issue and Kashmir were rightly accorded higher priority when the agenda for the composite dialogue was framed. The rationale for this priority is, if anything, more compelling today. It is purblind to restrict attention to terrorism only.

Foreign policy management:

The foreign policy lapse reflected in the Ufa statement is, unfortunately, not an isolated incident. There have been several other demonstrations of a naïve and simplistic approach to foreign affairs.

As has been noted in the Pakistani media, it reflects a dysfunction. The current complex structure at the apex of the foreign ministry is no doubt a major problem. An even larger problem is the inability of the professional foreign service to render good advice to the political leadership and/or the unwillingness of the leadership to accept it.

It is imperative to ‘normalise’ the structure, restore the primacy of the professional foreign service, integrate the security establishment into policymaking and appoint someone with the experience and independence required to formulate and project a foreign policy that reflects Pakistan’s vital interests and objectives and preserves its dignity.

Losing the narrative
by Munir Akram, dawning.com: The writer is a former Pakistan ambassador to the UN.