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12-18 February 2018 - 16-min

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2 12 - 18 February, 2018 Editorial NEW DELHI TIMES NIA probe on terror funding exposes bigger Pak design to destabilise Kashmir N ◆◆ By NDT Special Bureau @NewDelhiTimes ational Investigation Agency (NIA) entrusted with the task of investigating terror funding to Kashmir separatists and eventual prosecution in court of law has submitted its charge sheet exposing the links separatists have with Islamabad and the terror outfits operating from Pak soil. NIA charge sheet reveals that the website of Syed Ali Shah Gilani-led Tehreek- e- Hurriyat and that of US designated terror outfit Hizbul Mujahideen are designed and administered by the same individual, that too from Rawalpindi in Pakistan. It further talks about the technical support Pakistan establishment provides to the separatists. Zakirullah, a Pak national based in Rawalpindi, has designed and continues to manage Tehreek-e-Hurriyat’s website and Hizbul Mujahideen’s website The height of the revelation is that the telephone numbers registered on both the portals of these Kashmiri organisations belong to Pakistani –Zakirullah – who continues to stay in regular touch with separatist leaders arrested and charge sheeted by NIA. As NIA further dug into the association of separatists with Pakistan-based state and non-state actors, more skeletons came out tumbling. Pakistan’s spy agency ISI has formed a “Kashmir Committee” to fan separatism in the valley. The committee is headed by a Brigadier rank officer to plan and execute violence, stone pelting, funding, recruiting, logistics, and to perpetrate terrorist attacks and other anti- India activities. To broad base its nefarious activities, the Committee has members from Pakistani army, ISI, Syed Salahuddinled United Jihad Council (UJC), Kashmir separatists and others. All these revelations confirm India’s fear that the devious designs of Pakistan go much beyond mere funding of separatists or promotion of their ideologies. Islamabad has by now devised an organised platform that plans to integrate Kashmir- based resistance leaders with the leaders of banned terror groups. The All Parties Hurriyat Conference - a conglomerate of separatists in Kashmir with Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq and Yasin Malik as its top leaders - has also got a convenor in Islamabad who is identified as Ghulam Mohammad Safi, while one Parvez Ahmad liaises with the Pakistan government on behalf of these Pakistani stooges. The documents, emails, messages, videos, statements recorded by 300 witnesses and information collected through intelligence sources prove that terrorists, Pakistan army/ ISI and so called resistance leaders from Kashmir are interlinked in a highly integrated way. Some traders, former militants, and businessmen operating from Dubai, Pakistan and other places have also been drafted in to be part of this sinister plan to destabilise Jammu and Kashmir. NIA has already referred to the senior Hurriyat leaders – Syed Ali Shah Geelani, Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, Asiya Andrabi, Yasin Malik and Shabbir Shah - as the ‘organisers’ of the subversive activities in Kashmir. Recently a pack of Pak trained Taliban terrorists wreaked havoc in a Kabul Hotel where they went searching for foreigners from one room to another eventually killing foreigners that included four Americans. The gruesome murders was reminiscent of 26/11 attacks on Mumbai. Afghan intelligence team came to Islamabad armed with tapes of conversation between Taliban and their handlers in Pakistan. Groups opposing elected Afghan government - Taliban and Haqqani Networks – continue to operate from their safe heavens in Pakistan, US protests notwithstanding. Photo Credit : Shutterstock Given Pakistan’s propensity to build and operate terror infrastructure to torment the neighbours with the sinister motive of acquiring strategic balance, NIA’s charge sheet on Pak complicity with Kashmir separatists should not spring any surprise. The devil, however, lies in the details. The methodical approach with which Islamabad has built up the terror infrastructure in Kashmir and the regularity of its funding and sustained operations to manage the terror framework is definitely a cause for worry for India’s security apparatus. Women’s March betrayed women of Iran ◆◆ By Tarek Fatah Author & Columnist, Canada @TarekFatah hey came in the tens of thousands. T Women across the United States and Canada marched to assert their rightful place in society, no longer on the periphery, but at the centre. every time women take a step forward, the ripple effect is felt around the world. However, if the women’s movement itself becomes a pawn in the hands of ‘diversityconscious’ liberal feminists, it leads to strengthening the very forces that are institutionally targeting women to keep them in their place as dictated by the guardian men of the family or the state (in most cases March celebrated the awful headgear that has been imposed by the state and the clergy in a number of Islamic states and that has seen girls murdered right here in Canada. This year the hijab celebration was not that front and centre. Perhaps some sisters in the movement got the message that Linda Sarsour, the American-Palestinian Islamist who once tweeted about taking away Ayaan Hirsi Ali’s vagina, was not an appropriate figure to honour. they would have had an argument that could be debated. This was not the case. At many rallies, international issues that matter to Islamists did come up in the speeches. For example in LA, Thandiwe Abdullah, daughter of Black Lives Matter organizer Melina Abdullah, gave a speech in support of women in Palestine and declared Israel as an ‘apartheid state.’ But if hypocrisy was evident last year, in the recent 2018 march, selfishness, arrogance and ignorance could be seen in abundance. Long before the march in DC, Toronto, Los Angeles and other cities, women in Iran had revolted in a courageous manner to stand up to the ayatollahs and many ripped off their oppressive hijabs to challenge the dictatorship of the Islamic Regime. “Israel is an apartheid state with over 50 laws on the books that sanctions discrimination against the Palestinian state,” she said, arguing U.S. citizens are complicit in these actions. In Canada, a Toronto Star column reported on how a speaker “brought people to tears with stories of atrocities against her fellow Rohingyas.” Excesses of language and silly pussy hats aside, this year’s march came in light of the #MeToo movement and the exposure of many prominent men accused of sexually assaulting women. As a father of two daughters, from a society where women suffer immeasurably more than their sisters in the West, I know that Islamic). It seems Western feminists have decided to respect such misogynists simply because their overt anti-Americanism has become an intrinsic part of the ‘women’s rights’ movement. During last year’s marches, the Women’s Further west, the amazing female soldiers of the Kurdish YPG were involved in resisting the invasion of Syria by the Islamofascist Turkish Armed Forces. One would have hoped that the Women’s March would utter some words of solidarity with the brave women of Iran and the Kurds, but that was not to happen. Not one word was said. Had the organizers claimed that the march was about women in the West, The question that remained unanswered was this: If Rohingya and Palestinian women could find space in the march, why were Iranian and Kurdish women excluded? Who made that decision? In the meantime, the Iranian woman who protested the country’s enforced hijab code by standing on a pillar-box in Tehran and taking off her hijab is missing and feared to have been arrested. India’s only International Newspaper

12 - 18 February, 2018 3 I P Editorial ◆◆ By Dr. Ankit Srivastava Editor - in - Chief @AnkitNDT NEW DELHI TIMES India’s Membership of Exclusive Clubs ndia has applied for membership of the exclusive club of nuclear powers - the Nuclear Suppliers’ Group (NSG) - which is currently under its active consideration. Member states are reportedly deliberating on membership criteria for states that are not party to the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT). China continues to oppose India’s membership bid. To compound India’s problem, a paper released by Harvard Kennedy School’s Belfer Centre for Science and International Affairs in January offers a Pakistan-centric, one-sided view, by hyphenating India with Pakistan. Author John Carlson, a former director general of Australian Safeguards and Nonproliferation Office, argues against admitting India without proper safeguards. Forsaking a utilitarian global view of India’s membership, Carlson rather singularly focuses on interests of Islamabad. Excessively focussed on Pakistan, he blames Indian system of creating an unverified grey zone between military and civilian material that do not meet NSG standards. Carlson’s ◆◆ By NDT Pakistan Bureau @NewDelhiTimes NSG remains the Last Frontier partisan obsession with Pakistan’s interest becomes evident from his words, “Pakistan, which has raised concern about the strategic threat posed by India’s unsafeguarded materials and facilities and is also seeking to join the NSG”. Why should India’s membership be viewed solely from the angle of Pak interests or its strategic perception? Castigating India-IAEA safeguards agreement as ‘not an appropriate model to apply’, the study prescribes for NSG membership a clear separation between civilian and noncivilian nuclear programmes and application of safeguards to the civilian materials and facilities against military use. This apparently Islamabad-funded study even argues that if India is reluctant to amend its safeguards agreement, ‘perhaps Pakistan can lead by example by concluding an agreement that avoids these problems.’ Pakistan traditionally perceives India’s fast breeder reactors and similar materials and facilities as military programmes that pose strategic threat. Islamabad disapproves India’s current Separation Plan of operating a ‘civilian and military programs closely linked’ fuel cycle model and criticises running of dualpurpose facilities that have been shunned by the nuclear-weapon states decades ago. It urges India to scuttle this stage of nuclear development. India’s 2006 Separation Plan placed under IAEA safeguards 14 out of 22 power reactors then in operation or under construction, together with nominated upstream and downstream facilities - 35 in all. All future facilities - ‘civilian’ and not engaged in activities of strategic significance - were to be placed under safeguards. The overarching criterion was whether subjecting a facility to IAEA safeguards would impact adversely on India’s national security. Currently, India has three classes of nuclear facilities: 1.civilian and designated for IAEA safeguards; 2.functionally civilian but can be dual-use; and 3.purely military. Eight out of the 22 heavy water power reactors, fast breeder reactors and enrichment and reprocessing facilities are not designated for safeguards. There is perfect separation plan within the civilian safeguarded, dual-use unsafeguarded and military programmes, but Carlson apprehends a theoretical possibility that civilian facilities could be transferred into safeguards and safeguarded material could be used in normally unsafeguarded facilities, and unsafeguarded material could be used in safeguarded facilities. On both safeguarded and unsafeguarded programmes India retains the flexibility to optimise fissile material production. Carlson argues that such flexibility contradicts the international assurances IAEA safeguards are intended to provide and jumps to presumptive conclusion that the NSG is unlikely to have a consensus on admitting India, unless civilian nuclear facilities are separated from non-civilian nuclear facilities. A developing India has huge energy needs and has a clean non- proliferation record unlike Pakistan. The Carlson report laughingly equates Pakistan - an irresponsible nuclear proliferator - with a highly responsible country like India. Carlson’s partisan ranting doesn’t matter much. The world has moved on. The consensus is there within NSG; China for its narrow self-interest remains the sole exception. Injustice galore, Pakistan-Occupied-Kashmir akistan observes Kashmir Solidarity Day, or Kashmir Day, as a public holiday every 5th of February to showcase its support for people in Kashmir valley wherein imaginary tales of India’s so called excesses are discussed. The year 2018 was no exception. “Kashmir is the unfinished agenda of Partition!” “Kashmir is Pakistan’s jugular vein!” and “Kashmir and Pakistan are like one soul in two hearts!”- were the routine slogans mouthed on the occasion. The international terrorist Hafiz Saeed - a Punjabi but self-proclaimed leader of Kashmiris – grabbed the platform to advocate for jihad in Kashmir, so did the disgraced Nawaz Sharif whose daughter shouted, “Kashmir banay ga Pakistan” (Kashmir will become Pakistan). Hard fact is Kashmir no more evokes the same passion in Pakistanis as it did in the 1980s and 1990s. Gallup Pakistan’s periodic polls on Pakistani perceptions of the Kashmir conflict revealed in 2016 of growing Pakistani disenchantment with Kashmiri cause. Increasing number of Pakistanis today accept the reality explaining (POK) is a no man’s country the downward spiral in participation in Kashmir Day celebrations. Politicians and terror leaders repeat the rhetoric just to maintain the fervour. Pakistan utilised terror commander Burhan Wani’s death to unleash a new spell of violence in Kashmir to propel Kashmir issue to the forefront of international psyche. Pakistan’s pledge of solidarity with Kashmir valley gives erroneous impression that Kashmiris in POK are a happy, satisfied and emancipated lot. Pak discussions on Kashmir regularly ignores POK but becomes relevant only when people face fire from Indian forces fighting infiltration when Pak army uses them as human shield for cross border violations. The year 2017 marked the highest number of ceasefire violations across LoC since the 2003 ceasefire agreement and POK suffered heavily. Year 2018 had over 200 ceasefire violations so far. Government and Pak army prefer to stay safe from POK, except occasional visits, leaving men, women and children to face the brunt of cross-LoC shelling. Locals in Khuirratta and Kotli protested against injury to nine people during recent shelling, but were forced to retreat. Pakistan army provokes Indian army by shelling but leaves civilian population defenceless during retaliatory fire without bunkers and basic amenities, making them lambs for slaughter. The civilian government is largely absent from POK. Without facilities of relocation, compensation and allowance, people are left on their own. Government remains obsessed, like a maniac, on snatching Kashmir valley from India! Health care facilities in POK are primitive with no fully functional hospital despite Pak army’s frequent ceasefire violations and resultant casualties in Nakyal Sector. Government has totally abandoned its primary responsibility towards healthcare like treatment of injuries. Poor quality of medical services and alarmingly low doctorto-patient ratio is inadequate to save lives. Corruption also eats into compensation on casualties. POK is dotted with river dams that fulfil the rest of Pakistan’s energy needs but yield no royalties; POK is not a province of Pakistan. There is an acute shortage of water and power. For implementing projects that benefit other parts of Pakistan POK is deemed a part of the country. Taken for granted, no permissions sought from the local government. Roads are full of rubble with primitive sewage pipelines. Neelum Valley still agitates for a road from Athmuqam to Taobat. POK literally is a no man’s country. Posters in Lahore and elsewhere instigating sympathies for Kashmiris are mere hallow commitment to the Kashmiri cause, with jingoistic displays of ‘solidarity.’ Even on Kashmir Day, nobody stands up for Kashmiris in POK as Pakistan does not consider them Kashmiri enough. Their basic rights, like those of Mohajirs in Karachi, are never considered important, deserving of intervention and attention. Since 1947 Pakistan has blundered on Kashmir times beyond number. It harbours no sympathy for POK people but wants them just for strategic gains. The Pak puppet regime in Muzafarbad has worsened over years. Obsession with Kashmir valley, just for political mileage, has ruined Pakistan exacting huge cost: stunted economic growth, loss of development focus, misery to people, rise of fundamentalist terror groups, national frenzy, and loss of credibility on world forum. Welfare of POK people has become hostage to the political games Pakistan plays. Pakistan has never introduced local government in POK to nurture a strong inclusive leadership but it shamelessly demands plebiscite in Kashmir valley! Status quo still remains the only viable alternative to Kashmir problem. India’s only International Newspaper

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