Pakistan once again managed to befool New Delhi and the Indian media through its diversionary tactics.
They cleverly diverted the attention from the unfolding big Abu Jindal story, where complicity of Pakistan's ISI involvement in the 26/11 operations was being established.
Initially they announced the Presidential pardon on 26 June 2012 for Sarabjeet Singh, putting the government and the media in a tizzy. Subsequently late at night they changed the name to Surjeet Singh adding huge heart burns and confusion.
The result was that the Indian television channels fell into an emotional trap and instead of focusing on the big unfolding story of huge national interest concerning Abu Jindal digressed to discus threadbare the lesser story of Sarabjeet Singh alone.
The confusion purposely created by Islamabad gave ISI breathing space to devise a face-saving counter attack on the Abu Jindal story. The attack was launched later in the evening to destroy the credibility of the unfolding Jindal story.
Rehman Malik was put into play to deny any involvement and to claim that since Abu Jindal was an Indian citizen, New Delhi should be held responsible for his terrorist activities and not Pakistan.
Indians, despite Pakistan's treachery of 65 years had learnt ‘no lessons'.
On Jindal, many commentators within the government and outside said that they now have solid evidence in Pakistan Army's direct involvement in Mumbai 26/11 operations. However they conveniently forgot that we already had adequate evidence by capturing live Azmal Kasab etc.
The government despite the clear evidence that convicted Kasab, did nothing to contain Pakistan's inimical activities. Subsequent singing by Abu Jindal was merely a bonus in terms of additional evidence. I am confident the government will again do nothing except indulge in rhetorical statements.
The key question is can Pakistan be trusted ever?
The victory in 1971 that Indira Gandhi and the military gave to India was lost at the Simla Summit. Bhutto was allowed to escape without finalizing LoC as the International Border. He promised the then Indian Prime Minister that due to pressures from the domestic constituency, he be allowed to ratify acceptance of LoC as the final border later.
Rest is history.
Prime Minister Vajpayee's ill-advised bus trip to Lahore resulted in Kargil, whereby the Indian Army was made to sacrifice lives of 500 young men by climbing steep heights to eject the enemy, instead of adhering to the military principal of warfare by sitting on the rear of the enemy in Skardu and cutting of the supply line.
There are innumerable incidents of treachery by Pakistani military dictators that amply display that the agenda is to destabilize the Union of India by indulging in every dirty trick in the arsenal of ISI. The capture of Abu Jindal merely reinforces the fact that sixty-five years later Pakistan Army's agenda against India remains intact.
Once again, it should be clear to the Prime Minister and Home Minister of India that Pakistan will never accept the concrete evidence offered by India to move against the criminals of 26/11 based in Pakistan as they are considered "strategic assets" and nourished by ISI.
In fact, it is bizarre that New Delhi continues to present reams of evidence on Mumbai 26/11 to perpetrators and expects them to accept their guilt.
This is height of naivety!
Pakistan will never change. Therefore, India must change. Sixty-five years later, it is time for India to finally rise from its pacifist policies of appeasement to strategic assertion by refusing to tolerate any threat posed by Pakistan to the Union of India.
To call Islamabad' bluff, New Delhi will have to execute an aggressive multi-dimensional strategy that will raise exorbitantly the cost of waging war on India.