IN THE aftermath of the 11 September carnage in the US the world situation has changed significantly. Half-a-million soldiers have been massed along the Indian-Pakistani border, including Kashmir, the largest mobilisation of armed forces since 1971. “We don’t play soldiers on the border… what I’m doing is for real. I have not gone to do an exercise”, remarked the Indian army chief, General Sunderajan Padmanabhan, at a press conference on 11 January. Talk is of a full readiness for war with Pakistan.
TONY BLAIR’S shuttle diplomacy to resolve the longstanding Kashmir crisis that has brought India and Pakistan to the brink of war has been an abject failure.
Even as he tried to defuse the political tension, shelling continued along the disputed Line of Control forcing 50,000 to flee their homes. And while the prospect for an immediate war has receded in recent days the border remains on a hair-trigger as the military build-up continues.
GLOBETROTTING TONY Blair has jetted off in a bid to avert a looming military conflict between Pakistan and India. But it is the US-led Afghan war – backed by ‘lieutenant’ Blair – that has further destabilised central Asia, risking an India/Pakistan war.
IN THE most serious conflict between the two nuclear powers since the Kargil mountain war in 1999, both the Indian and Pakistani ruling classes have put their countries on a war footing.
IN THE worst ever earthquake that India has seen in the last two centuries, Ahemadabad, Bhuj, Bhachau and the entire Kutch district have been devastated.
Ten days after the disaster the most conservative estimate puts the body count at 100,000. The final toll will be at least four times that number as the day of the earthquake was a holiday and people mostly remained home.
CORRUPTION CASES are nothing new to India. In recent times some cases have been pursued vigorously and quite a few have been indicted, but the judicial system gives the rich and powerful umpteen loopholes.
Bribery cases include former governments buying off opposition MPs to vote for the government on financial bills but nobody has been put behind bars.