Tuesday, May 29, 2012
The myths of wild roses and Pakistani presence in Siachen
Indians are nice people. ‘It’s time to resolve Siachen’ says Pakistan army chief Parvez Kayani and immediately voices rise all over India to say, ‘Yes, it would be so nice to finally befriend Pakistan; are we not brothers?’
The good general called for demilitarisation of the Siachen glacier and advocated peaceful coexistence with India. He solemnly stated: ‘The world knows why we are in Siachen,’ inferring that Pakistan troops are positioned on the glacier. However, there is something wrong in the general’s reasoning, for the simple reason that Pakistan has never occupied the glacier, which lies east of the Saltoro Ridge, also in India’s possession. So why should India vacate a place belonging to her and in her possession? To give ideas to the Chinese that India should also vacate Tawang?
In 1984, a certain Brigadier Pervez Musharraf tried his luck. In a ‘Kargil’ style coup, he sent troops to take over the Siachen glacier. New Delhi was compelled to retaliate and occupy the treacherous Saltoro Ridge to stop Pakistan grabbing the gate to the Shyok valley and the entire Ladakh region. Since then, Pakistan has not set foot in the area.
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