India Insight

Firing on LoC: Blame game and spillovers continue

January 15, 2013

Firing between India and Pakistan along the Line of Control (LoC) in the disputed region of Kashmir has left five soldiers dead (two Indians and three Pakistanis). In India, the issue became a front-page story with the media expressing outrage over reports that the body of one Indian soldier was allegedly mutilated by the Pakistanis.

The incident fuelled tensions between the two nuclear-armed neighbours and Indian political parties have minced no words in their calls for retribution.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Tuesday called the act “barbaric” and said it was no more “business as usual” with Islamabad.

Anti-Pakistan sentiment spilled over in India in the fields of art and sports, reminiscent of the snub of Pakistani players in the cash-rich Indian Premier League after the Mumbai attacks of 2008.

Here’s a list. We’ll keep updating it.

  • Indian hockey officials have released all nine Pakistani players signed up to play in a new franchise-based league after protests against the athletes in Mumbai on Sunday. (Reuters)

Around 100 members of the hardline right-wing Shiv Sena had protested at a stadium on Sunday where four Pakistani players, contracted by the Mumbai Magicians team, were practising.

  • In women’s cricket, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has written to the International Cricket Council (ICC), asking if its matches in the upcoming Women’s World Cup could be shifted out of Mumbai.

The PCB says it is concerned about players’ safety in light of the Shiv Sena protests against hockey players. The World Cup begins Jan 25. (NDTV)

  • Two Pakistani singers, who were to supposed to perform in India later this month, had their shows cancelled as a fallout of the Kashmir flare-up.

Javed Bashir, a classical singer, was to perform at Delhi’s Siri Fort Auditorium on Monday but the organisers decided not to go ahead with the show. (IBN Live)

Pop singer and actor Ali Zafar was scheduled to perform in Pune but protests by Shiv Sainiks led to the cancellation of the show. (IBN Live)

Comments
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In my opinion better a Pakistani artist suffers than war between two countries. I have been reading editorials of leading dailies- TOI and HT. Both of them ridiculed the above happenings and said it will not solve the problem in the long run. Well, to start with the middle class is not this optimist that India and Pakistan will stop fighting. But there is something called drawing a line, saying that certain things are not acceptable. Is it the first time that such thing has happened? Then why didn’t middle class react before? Because not even in our worst nightmares had we imagined that for 13 years a father of an Indian officer will be running from hill to post for justice for his severely tortured son. When Kargil happened in 1999, I remember images of Pakistani soldiers being buried with full respect, proper coffins, Islamic rituals and Pakistani flag by Indian army. What prompted it was the fact that Pakistani army refused to claim the soldiers. And what we get in return is stunning silence of political class on what happens to the people and the army. (And mind it I am not saying that Indians shouldn’t bury the soldiers in the future, but our soldiers, officers and people are not going to be mistreated by Pakistan). The rhetoric of Sushma Swaraj is too late. It was during BJP reign’s that Saurabh Kalia was attacked. What have both these parties done to stop these instances. If today Salman Bashir has decided to probe the matter is because of the outrage of the middle class and the media. (Though honestly I don’t see much outcome, I am sure that Pakistan will find some way to deny).

As far as question of Pakistani artist is concerned, I agree it’s complicated. In Pakistan we are meeting a fractured society that has lost control over it’s army. So we may not be able to blame Pakistani people for everything that happens. But even here is a common thread- both the artist and army hate India. There is a strong anti-India sentiment. I am not sure how much these artists build trust and placate tempers against India. They can, but I am not sure if they have much power. But as the matters now stand let these people go respectfully back to Pakistan and placate the middle class temper than an outright war starts out. Because we are rightfully indignant over last 20 years of terrorist attacks on our soil, mutilation of our soldiers, regular militancy in Kashmir (check your own record in Pakistan occupied Kashmir before you lecture India http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_right s_abuses_in_Azad_Kashmir), and yes the insulting silence of our political class.

Posted by Woman21 | Report as abusive
 

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