Since the inauguration of Narendra Modi as Prime Minister of India in May 2014, by inviting all the leaders ofSouth Asiaon his oath taking ceremony, he sent a clear message that he wants to have friendly relations with all neighbouring countries. To further bolster this resolve he made visits to all neighbouring countries including Pakistan that has very bitter relations with India since it came into existence in 1947 at the time of independence after division of India. PM Modi is a pro-development man and he knows very well that unless and until peace is established inside and as well as with neighbouring countries, desired pace of development can not be achieved. He also knows very well that low hanging fruit of economic development lies in regional economic cooperation and integration for all the regional partners. Therefore, he accorded high priority to regional cooperation in South Asia and even went extra miles in his foreign policy by visiting Pakistan.
However, despite Indian PM’s effort and the positively changing mood of civilian government in Pakistan towards India, non-state actors and some of the military establishment in Pakistan through their covert operation are sabotaging the normalization of relations between India and Pakistan. And Pathankot terror attack is an outcome of the same as these non-state actors and some military establishments are not happy with visit of Modi to Pakistan and forthcoming Secretary level talks between India and Pakistan. The main reason for this is that there is no control of civilian government on military as evident from previous military coups. The other reason for the same is nexus between military and non-state actor i.e. terrorist groups. Economic and other strategic interest of military and non-state actors lies in anti-India rhetoric. Non state-actors are using religion for legitimacy of their terror activities and military has also provided support to them in their efforts. This has led to radicalization of a certain section of their society since time of Soviet-Afaghan conflict in eighties who are ready to lay their life for ideologies. However, apparatus of terror organization created by them has started backfiring them as evident from Bagah Border bombing, attack on naval base and Peshawar killings etc.
Now PM Modi has done his part to improve relations with Pakistan. Now, it is to be seen that how Pakistan is responding to Pathankot terror attack when relevant evidences of involvement of some of non-state actors as well as some military officers of Pakistan have been handed over to Pakistan to take action within a deadline of 72 hours. Pakistan should take it as an opportunity to crackdown on terror outfits in order to eradicate terrorism on its own soil. If Pakistan is sincere to eradicate terrorism from its soil and its civilian government is really capable, then some concrete action against perpetrators of Pathankot attack will be visible. Otherwise, if Pakistan is not sincere or its civilian government is not capable, then it will take the excuse of fleeing of non-state actors or seek some more evidences and time. In that case, it will be a decisive moment for course correction for PM Modi towards its Pakistan policy. What type of course correction by India in Indo-Pak policy will take place that only time will tell, but it will be definitely different from previous ones and will be surprising.
In media there are some voices that PM Modi is taking hard line stand against Pakistan. Right since his inauguration as PM in May, 2014, PM Modi took initiative to improve and maintain better relations with its neighbouring countries, especially with all the members of SAARC countries including Pakistan. He called head of state/government of all members of SAARC countries at his inauguration and he always talked about development of entire SAARC region. He offered to launch satellites for benefits of members of SAARC countries for better communication and education among SAARC member countries. He also emphasized the need for enhanced trade among member countries for mutual benefits. Most of the SAARC member countries responded positively to initiatives of PM Modi except Pakistan. PM Modi has shown enough good gesture by proposing to help people in Pak occupied Kashmir during recent flood. Pakistan does not want to respond to good gesture and progressive diplomacy. PM Modi invited Pakistan for bilateral talks at Secretary level, but Pakistan spoiled the same by meeting separatist leaders in Kashmir before talk despite India’s advice not to do so. After cancellation of talk, Pakistan started unprovoked firing across the border for which India had no other option except to respond in similar manner. And India responded in very clear and unambiguous terms and India dealt the matter with iron hands. India and Pakistan fought four wars since 1948 to 1999, and all with heavy cost to Pakistan. Failing miserably in conventional warfare against India, Pakistan pursued the path of cross border terrorism. Though all the previous governments in India have acted tough during conventional warfare, but they did not respond adequately against Pakistan sponsored cross border terrorism. So, Modi has rightly taken a tough stand against Pakistan on cross border terrorist infiltration. PM Modi and the then Defence Minister Jaitely were right in their approach that Pakistan should bear the adequate cost of its misadventure in order to create a credible deterrence to its recurring misadventure. The meaningful talk can take place only if effective deterrence is created. Though sometimes tough action against Pakistan by India goes in favour of Pakistan by uniting various factions in Pakistan, but this should not be a prohibitive condition for pre-emptive action. However, unnecessary display of jingoism and machismo in electronic media is not warranted and sometimes it goes in favour of adversary.
Pakistan and some sympathiser of Pakistan argue that non state actors in Pakistan are waging war against India. This arguments were given in 1948 and 1999 war also from Pakistan side. There is nothing like non state actors in Pakistan that wage proxy war against India. They are fostered by military, political and religious establishment in Pakistan to be used mainly against India. Basically Pakistan is born out of anti India sentiments and nurtured on the same sentiments since its coming into existence. Moreover, Pakistan even after having same/similar ethnicity, language , history and culture it became puppet and religious laboratory in hands of some of the rich Islamic countries of West Asia. It is ridiculous that they don't introspect the reason for loosing Bangladesh and not serious about consolidating Balochistan, rather continuously they waste their energy on continuously harping on Kashmir issue. So, Indo-Pak relation must be seen in that perspective.
There is also some opinion in media that India can not attain its goal of attaining the status of regional/global power without having good relations with Pakistan. As far as India becoming a regional power or super power is concerned, Pakistan can not come in the way, as this path goes through economic development. Once economic power is achieved , it can achieve both hard and soft power to be in comity of powerful nations. And Modi is pursuing the same vigorously. So Modi's approach was absolutely appropriate in dealing with Pakistan.
Right from day one after being inaugurated as Prime Minister of India, PM Modi has accorded high importance to cleanliness and sanitation. However, formal Swachchh Bharat Abhiyaan (Clean India Mission) was launched on 2nd October, 2014 that is birthday of Mahatma Gandhi who himself was a a champion of campaign for cleaning of personal as well as public places and maintaining personal hygene during independence movement that continued even after independence. Gandhi has realized long back social and economic implications of hygene and sanitation for society in general and for poor strata of society in particular. In independent India Modi is first PM who has accorded such a high importace to cleanliness and sanitation, unlike pevious governments who just paid lip service to this cause. The major victims of poor cleanliness are normally poor people, who has poor access to nutrion, sanitation infrastructure and quality health services. When poor falls sick, his economic activities gets disrupted and source of livelihood comes to grinding halt, and if he is sole bread winner in family, then he and his family has to suffer a lot. In many cases poor gets trapped into quagmire of debt at exhorbitantly high interest rate from a local moneylender from where it becomes difficult to come out. And thus he gets permanently into debt and poverty trap.
PM Modi has rightly realized that without people's participation this national mission on cleanliness can not be made successful. Only government sponsered programmes alone can not bring the result. There are two pronged approach to address this issue. First and foremost is creating awareness about importatnce and need of sanitation, and other is creating infrastructure for sanitation. People need to be explained why cleanliness at personal as well as public places and maintaining personal hygene is important as it is directly related to our health and money spent on health care, and in turn it is economically advantageous. Then they need to be educated about good cleanliness practices that need to be followed by people on sustained basis. People need to be explained that shifting dirt and garbage from one place to other place without proper disposal does not serve any purpose. People need to be also educated how not to create filth and unhygenic conditions at first place itself, so that efforts required for cleanliness is reduced. And most important thing is that people should remove from their mindset that creating filth and non participation in cleaning either at personal or public places are respectful.
The other important approach is to create proper sanitation infrastructure. In absence of proper garbage collection, transportation and disposal infrastructure, it will only be shifting the garbage from one place to another place making other place unclean. There is need to provide proper toilettes, sewagw lines, sewage treatment plants and water supply system. Without providing these infrastructure by state cleanliness mission can not be achieved.
If the intended goal of National Cleanliness Mission is achieved in time frame of about five years, it will not only reduce the national expenditure on health care, improve the well being of the people, improve the productivity of people, but will also increase tourism by changing its landscape. So Swachchh baharat Abhiyan (National Cleanliness Mission) has great economic implications for India.
Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi is in India on 8th June 2014 to improve Sino-India relation. Perhaps, he will discuss the India visit of President Xi Jinping also to further improve relations. Modi has already accepted Japanese Prime Minister Abe Shinzo's invitation to vist Japan in July this year. US President Obama's invitation has also been accepted by Modi and he is likely to visit in September this year. All these three countries who are trying to cozing up their relations with new government in India led by Modi are great economic power and two of them i.e. US and China are strong military power. US and Japan are aligned and thay have their own joint security and strategic arrangements. Now it is to see which way Modi government leans. Is it towards US-Japan axis or towards China or maintain equidistance from all the three and maintainging only business relations. However, unlike many other head of Governments, Modi has displayed a unique diplomatic sign by choosing Bhutan as his first foregn visit as Prime Minister of India,
As far as Modi is concerned, he believes that if India has to get a respectful place among comity of powerful nations, it has to make rapid economic progress. And for economic development and progress, peace is an essential requirements and more so with neighbors. Similarly, China also must be aware of this fact that any confrontation or armed conflict may also spoil its ambition to become number one economic power in the world, because history is testimony that whoever plunged in war have lost their position even after winning the war. Therefore, both India and China would appreciate that this is not the proper time to dig up the old embarrassing issues rather to collaborate and cooperate for mutual benefits. As far as Japan is concerned, it will always try to rope in India against China to contain China in order to be in advantageous position in its relation with China. As far as US is concerned, it also does not want a strong China which could undermine its position in Asia and Pacific region, and it will try to prop up India against China, that will not be in over all interest of India and China. If India and China come under confrontation, the western power led by US will again try to hold their grip on Asia and would try to make its colony economically. Arms trade and possible future FDI by US defence manufacturing companies in India should not be seen in terms of strategic cooperation between India and US as it is compulsion of these two countries to come together to fulfill their mutual interest, as India is in dire need of getting defence technology, and US has to save its defence production units by providing them market. Now it is to see how India under leadership of Modi handle these three powerful nation and work cautiously to best of its advantage.