India is not just fighting a war against terrorism sponsored by Pakistan in Kashmir but a war to protect India’s wajood (existence) which is based on the principle of unity in diversity, said minister of state for external affairs MJ Akabar on Saturday.
Akbar was speaking at a symposium organised by Jammu Kashmir Addhyan Kendra Madhya Pradesh on the topic ‘India’s rising influence in Asia and the challenges’ in Bhopal.
“Kashmir is engulfed in one of the longest wars in the history from the last 70 years because of Pakistan which uses terrorism as a part of its state policy. The war going on in Kashmir against terrorism is also a war between ideologies of the two neighbouring countries,” he said.
Akbar said Pakistan believed in a two-nation theory according to which the primary identity of Muslims in India was their religion and not their ethnicity or language, while India always believed that people in the sub-continent can live in unity despite diversities. “India will not allow the two-nation theory which led to the partition to succeed again.”
The minister emphasised that India had always tried to resolve the Kashmir issue through peaceful means and dialogue. “But Pakistan has always believed in resolving the dispute through violent means, as, before 80s, it fought direct wars with India and after 80s, it started a war by the means of terrorism,” added Akbar.
Terming India as a pivotal power for Asia’s stability and prosperity, Akbar said, “The continent will bend where India will bend it. The role of India cannot be ignored by Asia and the world. The world has to understand that if India becomes economically strong, then Asia would also become strong and more prosperous.”
He said India was fighting a war of economic prosperity on its East and another against terrorism on its West. “At present, every other country in the world is fighting a war against terrorism or facing its threat. The war against terrorism in the world cannot be won without the help of India because of its democratic and economical power,” the MP said.
Akbar said Prime Minister Narendra Modi had given a decisive turn to India’s foreign policy with his ‘Act East’ policy.
“He (Modi) has also defined terrorism in a clear-cut manner by calling it the gravest threat to the world after the second world war and saying that there is nothing as a good terrorist and a bad terrorist. Terrorism in the world has grown because some countries like Pakistan were not clear about the definition of terrorism and had used it as a tool of its state policy,” said Akbar.