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War on Terror or War on Pakistan? What does India need right now?

Valentine’s day this year, a day which should have been dedicated for the celebration of love had been tainted with a despicable attack on our CRPF personnel in transit. After the terror attack on Pulwama on February 14, the Indian community as a whole has been crying for the blood of Pakistan.

Pulwama attack was an act of terrorism; one that should be investigated, and the perpetrators held accountable. Our countrymen have been quick to condemn the country Pakistan as a whole despite the lack of evidence.

PM Modi has promised that every single drop of tears will be avenged. While addressing the attack the Pakistan PM Imran Khan has said “If you think that you will launch any kind of attack on Pakistan, Pakistan will not just think about retaliation, Pakistan will retaliate.” he also added that only dialogue could help solve issues in Kashmir.

India has done everything in her power to isolate Pakistan diplomatically to hold it responsible for the unwarranted attack. India has revoked the MFN status to Pakistan. An import duty of 200 percent has been slapped on Pakistan almost effectively banning the imports from the country. India has also withdrawn of security cover of five Separatists leaders in the Kashmir valley. And today the brave men of Indian Air Force have struck the terror cells in Line of Control (LoC) in response.

At around 3:30 this morning, 12 Mirage 2000 fighter jets of the Indian Air Force dropped 1,000 kg bombs on terror camps of the Jaish-e-Mohammed, Lashkar-e-Taiba and Hizbul Mujahideen. The tension between the two countries has been mounting since the attack with both sides calling for war.

The sad part is that anyone who is heard speaking against the war cry are branded as anti-nationals. Former Test cricketer and Punjab Minister Navjot Singh Sidhu faced the wrath of so-called nationalists after he only argued that an act of terrorism committed by few individuals does not mean the entire country is the culprit.

Likewise, Mehbooba Mufti, former chief minister of Kashmir, is now accused of being a pro-Pakistani. Her only crime was that she favored a dialogue with Pakistan and urged India to accept Prime Minister Imran Khan’s olive branch instead of resorting to any military action.

In light of the recent events, more and people are scared of an impending war between the two nations. People of both nations don’t deserve to die by a war that politicians start. It is easy to post on social media calling for Pakistan’s end. But have you thought about what war could mean to us?

Our men at the border

The real war is not fought by the people who sit in the comfort of their homes and put up provocative posts in social media. If there is a war, the loss of lives would be humongous on both sides. People are saying they are tired of seeing the fallen heroes and it is time to strike back. What they don’t realize is that this will only cause more of our soldiers to come back home wrapped in tricolor. Not to mean the large number of civilians who will be dead or injured.

Job Loss

The unemployment rate in India is at an all-time high and war could mean a lot of lost jobs. All the resources and funding that should have been used for expanding the clean energy industry, broadening health care coverage, and increasing educational opportunities, will be invested for war. All these areas will take a direct hit and all the time, energy, and resources spent in these sectors will be undone by war.


source: tradingeconomics.com

Economic Drain

Our economy is still reeling under the effects of demonetization and introduction of GST. A war could seriously cripple our economy. Wars only lead to destruction. Roads, bridges, ports, oil & gas pipelines, which takes decades to build get destructed with a single bomb. The Inflation Rate in India averaged 6.27 percent from 2012 until 2019. This could easily go beyond 10% in case of a war which would make life difficult to war.

According to Business Today, the Kargil War cost our country around Rs. 10000 crores and in subsequent years the defense expenditure in the budgets was increased from Rs 39,897 crore in 1998/99 to Rs 47,071 crore during the year of the Kargil conflict – 1999-2000 – a jump of 18 percent.

An all-out war with Pakistan may prove too costly for both sides in terms of infrastructure and human lives. A war would mean destruction, human displacement, economic losses, sexual assault, food shortages, and further environmental degradation.

Nuclear warfare

India and Pakistan have had four major wars in 1947, 1965, 1971 and 1999. They also have had many border skirmishes and incidents. But all these wars and tiffs had remained conventional. This time, both countries are armed with nuclear weapons.

 

Former Pakistan President General Pervez Musharraf has rejected the prospects of any nuclear attack from Pakistan on India even after the relations between the two nuclear countries have reached “dangerous level”. He also said that if Pakistan will attack India with one atomic bomb then the neighboring country could “finish us by attacking with 20 bombs”, reported Dawn.

Indian nuclear doctrine is of no first use, but it is clearly repeated from topmost levels multiple times that retaliation will be massive and total. In the event of a nuclear war, which is highly unlikely, both countries would reduce to rubbles and wasteland. It might take centuries to rebuild the land.

Conclusion

Politicians benefit from spreading fear, and the media benefits off it too, making the people the only ones who lose out as we grow to hate each other further. We need to dig out the root of the problem and understand why so many young men in Kashmir are becoming militants and willing to die. We need better policies that are not designed to perpetuate the problems.

 

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