Indian Defence and Aerospace Summit

UPA compromises nation’s security

UPA compromises nation’s security

By Ram Jethmalani | 19 January, 2013
Chief of Army Staff Gen Bikram Singh, with his wife, meeting martyr Lance Naik Sudhakar Singh’s family in Sidhi on Friday. PTI

It almost appears that Pakistan has been given a carte blanche by the rulers of India, namely the Chairperson of the UPA, Mrs Sonia Gandhi and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, in its attempt to rape our country. The UPA government remains silent or passive and makes all the statements of appeasement that encourage Pakistan in its anti Indian designs. The UPA government has crossed all bounds in compromising our territorial security. It has raised the tolerance threshold regarding armed hostility against our country to such new heights that they can now only be termed only as "anti national", be it the attack on Parliament, or on Mumbai, or at our borders. The UPA government is determined that Pakistan shall not be given a befitting reply and that India shall be nationally and internationally humiliated.

When I write this I must declare that I have not changed my long held convictions of which I have spoken and written about ad nauseam. These convictions were formed when I was in a refugee camp in India and sharing with others the trauma and horror of our situation, faced with manifest hostility and contempt. Even Gandhiji had berated us as cowards in running away from Sindh "without even wearing our shoes". Our leader, Dr Choithram Gidwani had to walk out of the AICC meeting when he heard this unkind comment against the refugees. The incensed doctor retorted with words that I would rather not repeat. Yet, I believe today as I did in the past that Pakistan's democracy must be strengthened, even if we have to make some sacrifice to earn their friendship and gratitude. But by sacrifice I certainly do not mean appeasement or bartering away national security.

Many sections of our people are now convinced that if our country was led by a true Indian and not a foreigner, this deliberate contempt for the sovereignty and integrity of our country and its people would not have happened. No president of the ruling coalition would have remained quiet at the brutal beheading of our soldiers, not only in violation of civilised human norms, but also in violation of international law, if s/he truly belonged to India. This, however, does not mean that I endorse Sushma Swaraj's demand for ten Pakistani heads. India should remain civilised and respect norms laid down by international law, but from a position of strength, and appeasement.

Even with a major border crisis threatening us, the government is seen as weak and waffling, either under no leadership, or a leadership that has no stake in the country, satiated and spent with the spectacular plunder of India of the last eight years. The UPA government is being seen by the aam aadmi as having nothing but disdain and scorn for India and her core security concerns, and deliberately promoting its humiliation, both militarily and diplomatically. There is silence as usual from the UPA chairperson and the heir apparent. The message is simple — they couldn't be bothered about India's borders; it's not really their country, is it? The Prime Minister decided to speak only after a week, and the message that the country receives from this is that the defence and security of the country is none of his business, and he couldn't care less if our soldiers are beheaded or mutilated. No one has forgotten his Sharm-el-Sheikh speech. Which handler's words was he singing in the rain?

The Defence Minister, with whom lies the ultimate responsibility of the security of our country and welfare of his soldiers used a rather extraordinary word to describe the brutal mutilation of our soldiers by Pakistan, and its defiant insult to India. While the nation's blood was boiling, the strongest word that A.K. Antony could find in the English language to describe the barbaric crime against our soldiers was "unacceptable". Manish Tewari only confirms the belief that the present leadership discourages patriotism and protection of national honour. He labels them as jingoism. I'm not sure how many additional brownie points Manish Tewari will get for this statement? The only Indian leader who saved some national self respect was Narendra Modi who is reported to have politely asked his Pakistani guests to leave the Vibrant Gujarat Investment Summit. No abrasiveness or undiplomatic ranting. Just no-nonsense firmness.

This brings me to the serious crisis of the leadership vacuum gripping our country today. The nation is crying loud for a leader who can deliver them from the evils that they and the nation face today, governed as they are through a family whose hearts and minds are not on India or the betterment of its people.

There is only one person whose figure stands out strongly to fill this leadership vacuum, and that is Narendra Modi. Even before his third electoral victory in Gujarat, acknowledgements for his future role for leading India had started appearing — from influential international news magazines, from ambassadors of powerful western nations, from the youth of this country. Just take a look at the social networking sites, and one can see the groundswell of support for him to lead the country.

Even while the Congress party was using all its state power and influence to somehow get him indicted in a court of law and politically assassinate him, even while it was using every communication medium to demonise him, including concocting false evidence, Modi concentrated in developing Gujarat with complete commitment and integrity, both for modern infrastructure and investment, as well as for agriculture and rural development. He personally invested in healing the wounds of 2002 and integrating the minorities, and the results are for the country and the world to see. The Maino-Gandhi line is devastated. Their efforts to politically assassinate him came to naught, and as I have said earlier, if there is any Indian leader from whom they see a challenge to their bloodline, it is from Narendra Modi.

The country knows by now that the Congress party has a vested interest in preserving the critical mass of poverty, as in their electoral template, the poor are eternal vote banks. The fact that the human development indicators of Amethi, a VIP constituency that should have had the highest indicators in the country, are in many areas even worse than national indicators, validates this point. Poverty must persist, as only then the Congress party can dish out ill conceived populist doles and cash transfers, and give false aspirations to the poor just before an election. And there must be enough leakage points, so that at least in the matter of corruption, there is inclusive participation.

Now, elected for the third time as Chief Minister, Modi is the only leader with nationalist vision and grit that India sees for protecting its internal and external security. He is seen as the last hope for doing what is really required to convert 40% of our population enslaved to poverty, into productive citizens to contribute to India's development. Not by cosmetic sops like NREGA and cash transfers, but by actual building of human resources through better health and nutrition, education, skill development, and nurturing them to a level where they no longer require the unproductive NREGA, the implementation of which has enough material for a thesis on decentralised corruption.

These are and have been my firm beliefs, despite the threats of expulsion.

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