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Pakistan needs a Beant Singh

Discussion in 'Hard Talk' started by Archived_Member16, Feb 22, 2009.

  1. Archived_Member16

    Archived_Member16
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    source: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/articleshow/msid-4167078,prtpage-1.cms


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    Pakistan needs a Beant Singh
    22 Feb 2009, Swaminathan S Anklesaria Aiyar


    Islamabad's surrender to the Taliban in Swat is terrible news. A moribund Islamabad cannot stop Islamic terrorists from attacking India even if it wants to.

    It's another matter that Pakistan has long nurtured groups like the Lashkar-e-Taiba to target Kashmir. It's now learning what India learned in the 1980s — you can be devoured by monsters you create to wound others.

    Indira Gandhi nurtured two monsters — Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale in Punjab and Prabhakaran of the Tamil Tigers. When the monsters got out of control, she (and later Rajiv Gandhi) tried quelling them. Result: Indira was killed by disgruntled Sikhs, and Rajiv by disgruntled Tamil Tigers. The lesson for Pakistan is clear.

    The Taliban's rise in Pakistan has something in common with Bhindranwale's rise in Punjab. A religious preacher, he sought to purge Sikhism of modern evils and return to pristine Sikhism. He was outraged by reformist Sikhs like the Nirankaris, and his followers killed many Nirankaris including the Nirankari Baba.

    Religion and violence make a very dangerous mix. Yet, both Indira and the Akali Dal, sought to use Bhindranwale rather than jail him. Indira supported his candidates against official Akali ones in the 1979 gurdwara elections. And the Akalis sought to use his inflammatory Sikh rhetoric — including a demand for an independent Khalistan — to garner votes in state elections.

    The Akalis let him set up a terrorist fortress within the Golden Temple. This ended only when the Army overran the Temple and killed Bhindranwale. But this attack enraged many Sikhs, creating ever more militant groups.

    No politician or analyst initially viewed the Bhindranwale challenge as a law-and-order one, to be put down with a firm hand. All felt that Sikh sensibilities had to be assuaged with political compromises. My editor at the time thought peace could be bought by giving Chandigarh and more river water to Punjab. Alas! the terrorists dismissed such peace offerings with contempt.

    Rajiv Gandhi struck a peace accord with the Akali Dal, enabling it to win the 1985 state election. Yet, his attempt to use the Akalis to curb extremism failed — it only emboldened the militants, whom the Akalis had no will to control. Rajiv also struck a deal with Bhindranwale's nephew, Jaswant Singh Rode, and made him Akal Takht chief. But militancy only increased.

    He then tried Army rule, but that too failed. The militants became ever stronger, and soon constituted a quasi-state. They sent out hukumnamas (religious commands) ordering the closure of meat shops and cinema halls, and a terrorised populace obeyed. Policemen who tried to tackle terrorism were initially thwarted by politicians of the Congress and Akali Dal. Later, militants assassinated several police officers and their relatives.

    In sum, all compromises with religious terror failed. So did Army rule. What finally succeeded was democracy with an iron fist. Fresh state elections in 1992 were boycotted by the Akalis, in line with terrorist warnings. Beant Singh, the new Congress chief minister, gave his police chief KPS Gill a free hand to crush terrorism. Gill unleashed state terror to counter Sikh terror, replicating tactics that the militants themselves used. In barely one year, he crushed a decade-old problem.

    Only when Sikh policemen took on Sikh militants, with no interference from central or state politicians, was terrorism curbed. Earlier attempts at a Punjab-Delhi compromise or Hindu-Sikh compromise failed. The solution lay in reformulating the issue as one pitting Sikh liberals against Sikh fundamentalists.

    This has lessons for Pakistan. Attempts by Islamabad to placate or strike deals with extremists will fail, emboldening militants and lowering the state's stature.

    In elections, Pakistanis have repeatedly voted for liberal Muslim parties, not Islamic ones. Yet, these liberal parties — including the Awami National Party, which won the state election in the North West Frontier Province — have no stomach to take on the Taliban. Islamabad has sought compromises with militant Baitullah Mehsud in the tribal areas, but only succeeded in strengthening Mehsud. The new compromise in Swat will surely fail too.

    To succeed, Pakistan needs a Beant Singh. Muslim liberals will have to take Muslim extremists head on. The task has to be done by a state government using police skills, not the Army. Terrorists cannot be subdued by US planes or troops.

    This is a battle for Pakistan's soul. It must be fought by Pakistani liberals against Pakistani extremists, without regard to Indian or US interests or urgings. Once Pakistani liberals grasp this hard reality, as Beant Singh did in Punjab, they will find that victory over extremism can be surprisingly quick and complete.
     
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  3. Amarpal

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    Dear Khalsa Ji,

    If you at the surface. the name of Beant Singh, KPS Gill will come to be noticed. People have not even noticed what Narsimha Rao government at the center quietly did. It implemented many of the demands of the militants .e.g. naming Golden temple express, no smoking in walled city of Amritsar, broadcating of Gurbani from Harmandir Sahib, delicensing textile industry so that Punjabis are free to set up this industry, and many more ..... It is this which removed the support from public which allowed the then Govt of Punjab to do what it did.

    What the present Govt of Pakistan is doing in FATA and Swat is good, it is Chanakya's way of doing things. 'Pahalwani Brand' of brain is no good in the present world. One has to work out a Win-Win premise for settlement. True, how it works out, depends how the future path is treaded by the two parties.

    I wish people of this region a happy future.

    With love and respect for all.

    Amarpal Singh
     
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  4. Gyani Jarnail Singh

    Gyani Jarnail Singh Malaysia
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    Amarpal Ji...

    of what significance are these cosmetic demands..when the MAJOR DEMANDS hanging for past decades are still PENDING....WATERS..the BHkharra Dam and Headworks..the Capital of Chandigarh, Limited autonomy to the States, the Electricity of Punjab..the Agriculture Produce sale dependancy on Central policies ( thus Punajbi Farmer can never make a decent profit from sale of its wheat/rice/potatoes etc..and all Farming INPUT like Fertilisers.....pesticides etc all central control in terms of price...leading to PERPETUAL DEBT to the Punjabi Farmers )

    All this was preceeded by the Punjabi SUBA agitation..Punjabis got lathis/Jails/confiscation of properties... for asking about Mother Tongue..others got it on silver paltter !!!

    What happened to the INDUSTRIES in AMRITSAR ?? Amrtisar was ahead of DELHI at one time....Industries of Ludhiana..etc are facing ruin....

    With the coming of the Satellite Age..and Internet Age....the Govts have no control over Kirtan Broadcasting....as long as it mattered..Doordarshan Gave ZERO coverage even to PUNJABI language. I remeber..we in Malaysia used to BEG for Jalndhar Door darshan to just give us FIVE minutes of PUNJABI...on its Shortwave Radio Programmes....but they inisted on giivng us HOURS OF URDU...HINDI......etc etc BUT NO PUNJABI.

    NO sane SIKH would ever like to break away..revolt...or be agaisnt India...just look at how the Sikh Army defended it in the wars with pakistan....BUT when the Elder brother just refuses to give an inch and wants the entire MILE for his own.... then tempers flare...as they did..and the answer was in 1984 assault on Punjab...KPS and Beant...etc..

    I too join YOU in wishing the people in this region a Happy Future..I have a stake in it too....with LOVE and Respect to ALL humankind...
    :happy:
     
  5. kds1980

    kds1980 India
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    Gyani ji

    Isn't one of the main reason for demanding Punjabi suba was that in the the state of undivided punjab( punjab and haryana) sikhs were in minority and with time there was hardly any chance for a sikh to become chief minister.Some old haryanvi's told me in thier school punjabi was compulsory and they can even now read and write few words of punjabi
     
  6. Gyani Jarnail Singh

    Gyani Jarnail Singh Malaysia
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    The "Minority" status was never in the Sikh mind at all...but it was in the opposing mahasha side...That was WHY they ahd to subvert the CENSUS and force the Hindus to write HINDI as their mother tongue..while speaking PUNJABI !! Even that didnt satisfy them... they went ahead and left out huge PUNJABI speaking areas OUT of Punjab...the GOVT of Delhi is the one that made Punjab as Small as possible...and turned it into a Sikh "Majority" state...then they set about SABOTAGING the Akalis into what the Badals are TODAY...the early Akali govts never lasted even half their full terms..under any pretect the centre would impose emergency rule...and the huge migrant populations from Bihar UP will soon make this "so called Sikh majority a pipe dream as intended...
    Only Sikh PUNJABIS cannot buy land in neighbouring states..punjab sells to anyone !!
    Just too many grievances...as many as the hair on the head...
    Most are not aware of the struggles of Master Tara Singh Ji.....he has got ZERO votes in the poll on influential sikhs !!! Punjabis are forgetting their history...and they will regret it..soon enough. The Akali Dal is now a Punjabi Secular Party..the SGPC is a SHAM/corrupt and totally irreligious organsiation.... Deras spreading like wild forest fires...punjabi not seen on any signboards..hoardings.. etc etc..see the rot setting in...very SAD.
     
  7. kds1980

    kds1980 India
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    Well It is totally upto Punjab Government to pass a law whether outsider can buy land in punjab or not because passing this type of law means agricultural land price will go down.
    which is going to hurt sikh farmers.As as UP bihari's are concerned punjab is not the state
    in which they are migrating.They are migrating in all over India as there population is very big and sooner or later there is going to civil war on this issue.I live in NCR region of Delhi
    which is in Haryana and there is too much hatred against UP,bihari's.
     
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  8. dalsingh

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    Bhindranwale never asked for Khalistan.
     
  9. Gyani Jarnail Singh

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    ALL he said was..Khalistan will be FOUNDED..the DAY Indira's Army attacks Harmandr Sahib.
    It is indeed the TRUTH that SIKHS never demanded Khalsitan.....ever. All they ever wanted was for Nehru and Gandhi to do whatever they PROMISED the Sikhs before 1947. Based on those solemn promises the Sikhs joined hands with India...but later Nehru turned around and said...SORRY..now the times have CHANGED. ( Meaning we are the New RULERS..the British are GONE...YOU are in the SAME POSITION as before !! slaves still but in Independent secular (hindutva) India..ha ha ha).
    Khalsitan was an invention of Indian intelligence Agencies to derail Sikhs PEACEFUL AGITATION for the Language/waters/capital city/punjabi speaking areas left out of punjab etc etc...classic example of..Give a "dog" a bad name and HANG HIM. But then it happened....the"dog" began to BITE...even though it had a chain around his neck strangling him..it refused to die !!..and its still BITING !!:happy:
     
  10. Amarpal

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    Dear Gyani Ji,

    Gujrat too is working under the same rules as Punjab, note the progress they have made. haryan also has as much freedom as Punjab, it has progressed far ahead of Punjab.

    Blaming the center is not good. Punjab was blaming center for preventing texltile mills to be opened here. That time I remember it was being said tgat Punjab produces 16% 0f India's cotton but the sanctioed spindle in Punjab was only 2% of the countries spindle capacity. The argument looked logical, but then Govt delicences texlite mills. Bothing happened in Punjab; cotton still goes to Gujrat. It is clear that Punjab was blaming others for its own inefficiencies.

    Now I live in Punjab, I do not see any thing other than agriculture that I can be praud of. The Govt of Punjab and its leadershio can do much for the people of the state even under the existing constitution.

    No use blaming others, Punjabis have to tighten their own belt. Punjab needs a very efficient management at all levels. It is at present very poorly managed. I feel very sorry.

    With love and respect for all.

    Amarpal Singh
     
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  11. Huck_Finn

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    thanks for the lucid reasoning Amarpal ji

    I believe that we punjabis ourselves are to blame for the issues we are facing. entrepreneurship is almost dead. It is a natural cycle that all affluent pockets/regions go through. This too shall pass.

    But i believe that youth should be on the look out for an opportunity that allows it to leapfrog. Food processing and exports is one area. Diversified and exotic farming is another.
    We need to look beyond setting up manufacturing plants, IT parks. Every region has unique strengths, we should leverage those and leapfrog, rather than ape others.

    Punjab has much better road infrastructure than say Tamil nadu or AP and its farmable land is more integrated throiugh multiple mode.
    In today's economy, growth comes through right timing your jump, not perfecting the jump. :)

    bhul chuk maaf
     
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  12. kds1980

    kds1980 India
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    Now back to the topic.This person really need understand sikh religion first.Nirankari's were no way a reformist sikhs.
     
  13. harbansj24

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    Only Sikh PUNJABIS cannot buy land in neighbouring states..punjab sells to anyone !

    Gyani ji,

    I do not understand this at all. Sikhs are freely buying property in UP, Rajasthan, Haryana and Delhi. In Himachal also Sikhs own vast properties.
    There are genuine grievances but Sikhs are very prosperous in these areas and other parts of India also.

    There is social discrimination against Muslims but not very visible against the Sikhs.

    Of coarse most Hindus would like the Sikhs to give up their external manifestations and be like Sahejdhari Sikhs

    Gurfateh
     
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