March 2010
News    |   New Media     Advertising   |   Communications   |   Films    Events

Terrorism in India

On a short fuse 

South Asia’s big rivals prepare to talk. Another bomb goes off

In the 15 months since Pakistani militants launched a three-day assault on Mumbai, India has been largely terror-free. This has enabled its prime minister, Manmohan Singh, despite much domestic opposition, to start rethreading the diplomatic ties that India cut after that outrage. Senior diplomats from India and Pakistan are due to meet in Delhi on February 25th. Yet on February 13th—the day after that meeting was announced—a bomb blast ripped through a café in Pune, in western Maharashtra, killing 11.

Almost as fast, Indian fingers pointed to Pakistan, which has an ugly record of launching terrorism in India. Most Indians with a view of the matter believe Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence agency, or ISI, was behind the Mumbai attack, though this is unproven. Many, including Indian politicians of all stripes, struggle to imagine any rapprochement with their old enemy. “Not talking is an option,” says Arun Jaitley, a hawkish leader of the main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party. Yet the government’s response to the blast was restrained. It said the talks would go ahead—while stressing that its concerns over terrorism would dominate them.

This is a tribute to Mr Singh’s dogged—and rather lonely—search for peace. A growing fear in India that America, in its haste to leave Afghanistan, may allow Pakistan an influential role there may also have spurred re-engagement. Yet the promised dialogue is hardly inspiring. At best, it may lead to a cautious resumption of the former diplomatic process, but at a much less promising stage than before. Progress in the talks had slowed sharply, but the four-year effort had nonetheless yielded outlines to the solutions for many of the countries’ disputes, including the thorniest, the status of the divided region of Kashmir. The most many Indians now hope for is a dialogue serious enough to prevent war in the event of another Pakistan-linked atrocity on Indian soil.
  Online edition
  News analysis
  Opinion – All Opinion
  • Letters to the editor
  • Corresspondents Diary
  • Debates
  World Politics - World   This Week
  Special Report
  Business- This Week
  • Leadership and Change
  • Executive Education
  • Marketing & Innovation
  • Strategic Management
  • Politics and Public Policy
  • Human Resources
  • Business Ethics
  • Innovation and Entrepreneurship
  Special Sections
  Books & Art
  City Briefings
Privacy Policy | Terms & Conditions | Subscribe
Copyright © Conversations Online 2010. All rights reserved.
About Sponsorship :
Selected sponsors provide financial support for parts of in return for the display of their name, logo and links to their site(s) on those sections. Conversationsonline retains full editorial control, giving no sponsor any influence whatsoever over any content, including choice of topics, the views expressed, or the style of presentation of any content.