Pakistan?s broken promises
Pakistan has relentlessly pursued its agenda of intrigues and maintaining pressure on the Kashmir issue since 1947 with two main objectives: To extend its frontiers and divert the attention of its masses from developmental issues by keeping the tension alive. The first and immediate breach of promise was the violation of the Stand-still Agreeement. It came within a few weeks of Pakistan?s birth...Updated: Jul 24, 2003 18:25 IST
Pakistan has relentlessly pursued its agenda of intrigues and maintaining pressure on the Kashmir issue since 1947 with two main objectives: To extend its frontiers and divert the attention of its masses from developmental issues by keeping the tension alive.
If a span of just 18 years of Indo-Pak relations from 1947-1965 was to be analysed, one can see how these years have been marked and marred by Pakistan’s sustained hostility towards India and the numerous pledges Pakistan has failed to honour.
Violation of Stand-Still Agreement
The first and immediate breach of promise was the violation of the Stand-still Agreeement. It came within a few weeks of Pakistan’s birth. Two months before the formation of Pakistan, Mohammad Ali Jinnah had guaranteed sovereignty to Indian states after the British withdrawal from India.
He said, "Constitutionally and legally the Indian states will be independent and sovereign states and they will be free to decide for themselves to adopt any course they like; it is open to them to join the Hindustan Constituent or the Pakistan Constituent Assembly or remain independent."
But two weeks on, Pakistan launched a massive assault on Jammu and Kashmir in a vain bid to wrest the state’s territorial integrity. Within Pakistan, the states of Dir, Swat and Bahawalpur were bullied to surrender their sovereignty to Pakistan.
But this was just the beginning of Pakistan’s broken pledges. Breach of other pledges followed fast.
Violation of International Agreemetns
According to the Ceasefire Agreement of 1948 Pakistan committed to the following:
1.Cessation of hostilities across the cease-fire line.
2.Withdrawal of troops from areas occupied by Pakistan.
3.Withdrawal of tribesmen and Pakistan nationals from Jammu and Kashmir.
Pakistan continued to violate the cease-fire line and none of the above commitments were honoured. The ceasefire violations multiplied with each successive year: 448 in 1963, 1522 in 1964 and more than 1800 in the first half of 1965.
There was no attempt to withdraw the troops either. Instead, it was strengthen in the Pakistan-occupied Kashmir. Pakistan began the construction of the Mangla dam over the river Jhelum.
In another breach of pledge made to the United Nations, Pakistan handed over 2050 sq miles of Indian territory to China under the Sino-Pak agreement of March 2, 2963.
In a repeat of its invasion in 1947, Pakistan sent in thousands of armed infiltrators across the cease-fire line in August 1965 and violated the cease-fire line 556 times.
To foment discord and to use the trouble as a bargaining chip, Pakistan invented a border dispute when none existed. In 1956, to put an end to all border disputes once and for all, the Prime Ministers of India and Pakistan agreed to entrust the demarcation of the entire India-West Pakistan boundary to the Central Surveys of India and Pakistan on a high priority basis.
In 1958, the issue was taken up again and resulted in the Nehru-Malik Noon (Pakistan premier) agreement.
The agreement envisaged the following:
1. Exchange of Indian enclaves, the former Cooch Behar state in Pakistan for Pakistan enclaves in India.
2. Observance of ceasefire agreement on either side of the Indo-Pak borders. A procedure was laid down to implement the same.
Later, Pakistan denounced the agreement saying it compromised Pakistan’s interests and refused to stand by it in future or ever thus nullifying the Nehru-Noon (Pak premier) agreement.
In 1959, when the matter was reopened, the Nehru-Noon decisions were reiterated. Some results emerged from this round of talks and the Indo-Pak border agreement was formulated in 1960 which for some time provided a peaceful settlement on the Indo-Pak border.
In 1963 demarcation of the West Pakistan border with the Indian states of Rajasthan and Punjab by the joint teams of the Surveys of India and Pakistan was completed.
In 1964, first a request and later, several reminders were sent to the Director of Surveys, Pakistan from the Director of Surveys, India. No reply to the letters was forthcoming. And the expected followed: In 1965 Pakistan outright refused a meeting of the survey teams.
Pakistan’s constant refusal to settle the border dispute was perhaps fuelled by a fear: The fear that Pakistan’s pretensions to the territorial claim would be falsified if authoritative documents and data were laid bare for scrutiny.
And precisely for enforcing the false claims, Pakistan resorted to military force. In line with its past record, Pakistan broke the pact with America that arms received under military pacts would not be used against India.
The Indus Waters Treaty was another pact violated by Pakistan. Under a bilateral agreement India was to supply water to Pakistan from headworks in India against payment from Pakistan. Pakistan failed to renew the agreement when it expired in March 31, 1948.
Consequently, after a request from the Indian government for a fresh agreement it was agreed to diminish the amount of water supplied to Pakistan in view of India’s growing need for water.
For two years, the waters flowed smoothly till a sudden volte face from Pakistan on August 23, 1950. Pakistan claimed that it had signed the agreement under duress. The complicated proceeding thereafter was finally settled in 1960 with the signing of the Indus Waters Treaty. The Treaty
was heavily in favour of Pakistan.
The Indus Water Treaty was also seen as hope rejuvenated - hope for a long lasting peace between India and Pakistan. But Pakistan in keeping with its tradition of not honouring agreements violated the Treaty by constructing the Mangla dam in Pak-occupied territory of Kashmir.
And then again the Ichhogil Canal which was primarily meant as an aggressive installation by Pakistan as it hardly served any irrigational purpose.
Unwavering in its attempts to better Indo-Pak relations, India consistently strived to honour the Nehru-Liaqat agreement of April 8, 1950.
This comprehensive agreement was meant to instil a sense of security for minorities in a holistic manner - life, property, culture and personal honour. Despite the agreement, Pakistan frequently harassed the minorities and fuelled mob violence. The negative fallout of this attitude was a
mass migration from East Pakistan.
In 1964 alone, one million people migrated from East Pakistan to India and this time they were not just Hindus - there were 80,000 Buddhists and Christians as well.
The international press reacted with shock and horror at Pakistan’s persecution of the minorities and their subsequent mass exodus.
From 1947 to 1965, close to nine million refugees had entered India from Pakistan - more than the entire population of Australia.
The press in Pakistan replicated its government’s hostility towards India and from the very beginning adopted a negative attitude towards India.
Their primary job was to carry on a propaganda to foment discord in the Indian society. This was a direct violation of solemn affirmations by the two governments in 1950 and again in 1960 which stated that the press of both countries will not indulge in propaganda against either state, nor publish exaggerated versions of news calculated to arouse communal passion or cause fear or alarm to the population or a section of the country nor publish matter inciting to a declaration of war by one State against the other or suggesting the inevitability of war between the two.
In contrast to India’s efforts to honour the code, Pakistan violated every single clause of the Joint Press Code, regularly.
The head of state and other Indian leaders were abused and Indians addressed in language most foul by the Pakistan press. There were blatant attempts to incite violence between different communities in India to encourage rebellion against the government.
First Published: May 27, 2003 19:52 IST