Dirty money, dirtier politic
Written by The Indian EXPRESS   
Wednesday, 12 June 2002

Dirty money, dirtier politic




PAKISTAN has been suc­cessful in waging a proxy war on the Indian soil on three fronts. Firstly, through regu­lar influx of terrorism, it has forced almost the entire Indian military to be on the highest state of alert, si­multaneously engaging the police and Para-military forces like never before. Secondly, through kidnap­pings, ransoms and well-planned riots, it is damaging our country's sec­ular image. Thirdly, by pumping enormous sums of fake currency, it is raising the levels of parallel econ­omy to unprecedented proportions that could cause a near crippling blow to the Indian economy.


To Pakistan's great advantage is the fact that our intelligence agen­cies have often been caught nap­ping. The daylight attack on Parlia­ment and the burning of a train coach at Godhra are mute exam­ples of the status of our existing early warning systems, Sheltered by caste-based politics, hundreds of criminals are basking under our so-called great democracy, consis­tently reaping rich dividends from divide and rule, adding to the success of the Pakistani intelligence operatives. Compulsions of a frac­tured mandate and its consequent baggage of umpteen allies apart, absence of a delivery machinery is making our nation run in circles.




The secular fiber of our nation is being systematically tom into bits and pieces, creating a fear psychosis in the mind of the man on the street It is not difficult for him to visualise repeats of the 1984 riots that killed nearly 5000 Sikhs. The Congress ­led government then had failed to file even a single charge sheet. Years later, thousands of innocent Mus­lims had to face flak for what hap­pened at Godhra Christians could well be the next target!


Under the umbrella of failing legislative, ailing executive and cumbersome judiciary, one won­der if it is possible for any re­arrangement of coalition that could break free of the shackle and put the nation back on an even keel? Lakhs of migrated Kashmiri Hindus have only strengthened our COW1try'S image of being a soft state. War may not serve India's long-term purpose but the think tank must appreciate that more lives have been lost to the rapidly growing terrorism than all the Indo- Pak wars put together.


After the 9/11 incident, while the war against terrorism has become a globally accepted agenda, India has at best issued warnings to the uncon­cemed leadership across the border. However painful a cancerous growth in any part of the body, it has to be operated upon and extracted, Sadly however, having suitably surroun­ded themselves with black cats and commandos, our parliamentarians have not been able to push what should be our nation's topmost pri­ority, beyond the roadside banners and posters. Sometimes it is best to learn from the experiences of other nations. For example, Britain, Aus­tralia and many other nations have been justifiably strict with illegal im­migrants that could threaten their economy and society. much so that last year Britain deported hijacked Afghan Air passengers back to Kabul even at the risk of their be­ing .executed by the then Taliban government.


In contrast, millions of illegal immigrants, including terrorists, together with their arms, ammuni­tion etc., regularly sneak into India through the porous borders and are shamelessly sheltered by the regional· polity that in turn is guar­anteed of its vote bank. Shockingly, till date nobody in the garb of a politician has been punished in our country. When Australia detected substantial counterfeiting in the eighties, it tackled the problem by bringing out currency notes made of polymer, which was found to last longer than the paper notes. More importantly, it proved difficult to counterfeit, was easily recyclable and stayed cleaner.


Studying and adapting similar technologies could immensely help India in pushing the parallel econ­omy to the backseat We all are sail­ing on a ship that is on a self-de­struction course, traversing at an alarming speed through mined wa­ters. With over a million soldiers lined up on each side of the border, it would be easier for some trigger-­happy general to justify his itch of pressing nuclear buttons. It is, there­fore, of extreme importance that both the government and the oppo­sition refrain from cheap and self-centered politics and unitedly join the global war against terrorism.

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