Homeland Security

The best Possible Ramzan Gift to Kashmir
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Issue Net Edition | Date : 21 May , 2018

It is only the Indian State that can  declare ‘ceasefire’, so the term ‘unilateral ceasefire’ is in-fructuous and insulting, because the question of ‘bilateral’ ceasefire does not arise.

In the preceding year, during the period of Ramzan, jihadi terror organizations perpetrated terrorist attacks across the globe. There were attacks in London, Baghdad, Tehran, Kabul, Pakistan, Philippines.  Not even prayer congregations in mosques were spared. The worst victims were Muslim countries. In fact, with every passing year jihadi terror attacks during Ramzan have been growing in terms of frequency, intensity and spread. 

This year, and shockingly, Ramzan in Indonesia has been heralded by three deadly attacks. Indonesia is one country which celebrates synthesized and moderate Islam. It holds its pre-Muslim history and ancestors in great reverence. Significantly, when President Widodo visited India, he told Prime Minister Modi that he had named his son “Shri Narendra”. Kashmiri separatists, seduced by the idea of Pakistan, need to learn and reclaim Kashmiriyat based on the Indonesian paradigm.

…with every passing year jihadi terror attacks during Ramzan have been growing in terms of frequency, intensity and spread.

Tragically, the same very Indonesian religious paradigm has been under assault by jihadis and pan-Islamists. The violent contest between ethnicity and Islam that began 1400 years ago, is getting deadlier by the day. 

This May, Indonesia has been bloodied as never before. On 08 May, a security detention centre, located in outskirts of Jakrata was under siege by terrorists for 36 hours. Five police officers who were killed belonged to the counter terrorism force. The high security detention centre had several dreaded terrorists as inmates. Five days later on 13 May three churches in Surabaya city, East Java were attacked by a family of six members of which four were children. 13 civilians were killed and 40 were injured. Unbelievably, tragically and alarmingly, amongst the four children, two were girls, aged nine and twelve. These little girl suicide bombers had strapped themselves with explosives. Another family of suicide bombers – attacked a Police Headquarter on 14 May in Surbaya, killing at least four police officers. This wave of suicide bombings have been claimed by the Islamic State.

The sudden spike in jihadi terrorist activities is being attributed to Ramzan which begins on 15 May. The Wahabi brand of Islam believes that martyrdom during Ramzan is extremely holy and secures special place in heaven. It may be underscored that the same brand of Islamic consumes Kashmir. 

A segment of Indonesian population is still flirting with Wahabi Islam but this brand of pan- Islam killed Indian brand of Islam in Kashmir long ago. Thus the so-called “Ramzan Cease Fire” declared by the Union Government is misconceived. The misconception was exposed when on the very first day of Ramzan, a 23 year old youth was killed by jihadis in north Kashmir. The victim, Hilal Ahmad Parray, a painter by profession, was dragged out of his house and strangled. 

The violent contest between ethnicity and Islam that began 1400 years ago, is getting deadlier.

The Hurriyat leaders and the LeT have rejected the ‘Ramzan Cease Fire’ possibly to safeguard their business of radical Islam, a brand of Islam that revels in blood during Ramzan. 

Mehbooba Mufti’s demand for cease fire on behalf of militants was illegal and prejudicial to the integrity of the country. Constitutionally, it is only the Indian Government that has monopoly over force and therefore no armed organization or outfit can be permitted to appropriate the  gumption to declare or demand ‘ceasefire’. This was reiterated by Morarji Desai, the then Prime Minister of India during a meeting with Laldenga during the days of Mizoram insurgency .Laldenga during the meeting had offered case-fire. Morarji reminded him that it was only the Indian State that had the legal power to declare ceasefire. 

It is only the Indian State that can  declare ‘ceasefire’, so the term ‘unilateral ceasefire’ is in-fructuous and insulting, because the question of ‘bilateral’ ceasefire does not arise. 

The Wahabi brand of Islam believes that martyrdom during Ramzan is extremely holy and secures special place in heaven.

Is there still any doubt that jihadi terror in Kashmir is a proxy war waged by Pakistan since last three decades? So what is the import of’ unilateral ceasefire’ in a proxy war? Why this terror facilitation to proxy soldiers of Pakistan in the Valley? Why the Ramzan gift to foreign jihadis and their associates in the Valley? Pakistan sponsored proxy war has two facets i.e. the ‘LoC facet’ and the ‘Valley facet’. Has Pakistan declared, or has Mehbooba extracted a solemn promise from Pakistani masters that there will be no infiltration into the Kashmir during holy Ramzan? Have we given ‘Ramzan Ceasefire’ gift to Pakistan as well? 

This author has always contended that mainstream Kashmir politicians, in or out of power, are sophisticated proxies of Pakistan. Mehbooba’s ceasefire ruse therefore is a ploy stabilize and refurbish Pakistan’s proxy war military machine, because it has taken an unprecedented battering from the Indian Army in the recent times. Most of their top leadership of jihadi tanzeems have been eliminated. Some 13 top commanders were killed in April alone. 

Reports suggest that due to highly evolved coordination and intelligence of the security forces, the average career span of jihadis has reduced from years to months. It is also on indicator of poor quality of jihadi recruits and training. The decline in the career span of jihadis began with the killing of Burhan Wani, who was active for six years. His other Hizbul associates like Waseem Mala and Naseer Pandit and Saddam Hussain Paddar had shorter span of our years. Sameer Lone, who was recently killed had joined only in February 2018, and to top it all, sociology professor Mohd Rafi was killed within 36 hours of his joining a jihadi outfit. 

has Mehbooba extracted a solemn promise from Pakistani masters that there will be no infiltration into the Kashmir during holy Ramzan? Have we given ‘Ramzan Ceasefire’ gift to Pakistan as well? 

If life span of terrorists is shrinking, obviously their jihadi terror machine in Kashmir is losing steam. Why then break the momentum? 

The so-called ‘unilateral cease fire’ declared by the government during Ramzan is a tacit admission that religion is the only undercurrent over which terrorism is riding in Kashmir. It has got nothing to do with Kashmiriyat and everything to do with global jihad. Foreign militants do not risk their lives for the sake of Kashmiris and Kashmiriyat. Mirwaiz and Mehbooba have no problems, if Islamic State flags are waved after Friday namaz. Mirwaiz maintains that Islam does not distinguish between religion and politics. Mehbooba threw her finance minister Darbu out of cabinet, because he stated that Kashmir is not a political but a social problem. By ‘social’ he implied socio-religious. Radical Islam has desiccated  Kashmiri society, leaving it bereft of its celebrated history, humanity,  spirit of inquiry and intellect. 

Zakir Musa in a video message clearly stated that whether they (jihadis) are fighting with stones or guns, they are fighting for Caliphate as part of global jihad. And global jihad as propagated by Al Qaeda or Islamic State lays special emphasis on martyrdom during Ramzan. It is also true that every jihadi organization irrespective of their local roots subscribe to global jihad and Caliphate. So what purpose does ceasefire serve? 

If it is an experiment, such experiments have no place in war and is at the cost of security forces.

Those interested in salvaging Kashmir, should solely focus on altering the religious narrative. The Wahabi religious narrative is authored by the Mullahs and Maulvis of Bihar and UP, in the mosques and madrasas of Kashmir. 

If life span of terrorists is shrinking…Why then break the momentum?

Muftis, Abdullahs and the Hurriyat must realize that the fountainhead of Wahabism i.e. Saudi Arabia has unleashed a deradicalisation storm and is revisiting the country’s religious philosophy . This philosophy was radicalized and propagated worldwide with the help of petro-dollars and was engendered by the threat posed by Iranian Revolution in 1979. The same radicalized philosophy created the jihadi fighting machine that won the Cold War for Americans in the battlefields of Afghanistan. Subsequently, it travelled to Kashmir. Petro-dollars are drying up and the compulsion and increasing imperative of indigenous working hands has compelled them to free the country’s women. Women can now drive, watch football matches in stadium and a senior Saudi cleric made a public announcement that burqas are not compulsory in Islam. Foreign workforce is being replaced by Saudi women in large number of areas. In contrast, in Shopian in Kashmir, the LeT recently issued a diktat that women must don burqas which bare nothing but eyes. This diktat was concomitant with spike in jihadi activities in Shopian, including stone-pelting. 

The best and enduring Ramzan gift by Mehbooba and the Union Government would therefore be to disabuse the Kashmiri Muslims of the toxic religious narrative, and goad them to their roots, rather than bestow  ‘unilateral ceasefire’. Do Mehbooba and the Indian establishment have the intellectual courage to do it?

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The views expressed are of the author and do not necessarily represent the opinions or policies of the Indian Defence Review.

About the Author

RSN Singh

is a former military intelligence officer who later served in the Research and Analysis Wing, or R&AW and author of books Asian Strategic and Military Perspective and The Military Factor in Pakistan. His latest book is The Unmaking of Nepal.

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3 thoughts on “The best Possible Ramzan Gift to Kashmir

  1. Sir thank you so much for giving your views on this topic. In depth article. Government decision is all about the vote bank. Our soldiers are doing their best to rip these terrorist and such kind of decision of that point of time, ain’t a good decision. In the same manner the way ceasefire of 2000 resulted with deaths above 100 including security personals. This will also fail, infact this will boost up the confidence of the terrorist. Kashmiri militants and Pakistan is actually taking this as an opportunity, to relaunch themselves with more zeal. The Pakistan showed no respect, violated cease fire and martyred a BSF Jawan and killed our four civilians in border outposts in Jammu.
    Not a good decision it is.

  2. The author is absolutely spot on. The increase in attacks during Ramzan proves that the period of prayers and reflection is just an excuse to lull the Indian forces into a sense of calmness so that Jehadi elements can then launch big attacks.

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