NP Upadhyaya, Kathmandu: The SAARC regional body was not a cup of tea for the Indian establishment. Mrs. Indira Gandhi opposed the idea even at time of the establishment of the regional organization some two decades ago as she thought that the smaller neighbors of India in the vicinity were plotting some conspiracy against India.
It was her inferiority complex. She took the regional body a ploy to gag India to which it was not.
The main villain, as India perceived then, were Bangladesh Military ruler Zia Ur Rehman and King Birendra of Nepal.
Later King Birendra was harassed by Mrs. Gandhi and her son Rajiv. A history now.
However, it was not a design of Nepal and Bangladesh to harm India in any way or the other but yet the “conspiracy theory” continued to boggle the minds of the men in the British-India trained South Block. To recall India was born in 1947 after British India Company felt tired.
Perhaps it was the Indian allergy to this regional body from the very beginning which may have prompted the smaller neighbors to secretly inch closer to China. And they did so much to the discomfort of New Delhi torture-machine. It was an exclusive blessing in disguise for Beijing.
That China was watching the Indian hatred for the SAARC body for quite some time and was eager to join the regional arrangement any time soon should the India-annoyed neighbors take appropriate steps and propose China to join the South Asian regional entity.
Fortunately, the opportune moment came for China through the kind courtesy of Nepal king Gyanendra who have had to pay a very heavy price later. China duped King Gyanendra later when the King needed China most.
At the SAARC Summit held in Bangladesh, King Gyanendra openly lobbied in favor of China and thus annoyed the proxy Indian Prime Minister Dr. MM Singh. Mrs. Sonia ruled India with Dr. Singh as her proxy.
The Indian PM Dr. Singh instantly took a decision that it was time for the Nepali monarchy to say good bye from the world scene and it happened so as per the Indian desire. Shyam Saran did the rest of the job candidly albeit he may have drained some billions from the Indian national treasury for his sick pocket as well and some leftovers for mercenaries here and there. Some domestic fifth column in Nepal too encouraged Mr. Saran who was the foreign secretary of India then.
RAW supported our brave men, the Bahadurs, who sided with the Indian game plan against Nepal.
China entered the SAARC organization with the Observer status soon after the institution of the Nepali monarchy was abolished under Indian instructions-it is widely believed.
China took the overthrow of the Nepali monarchy as a normal event. However, China is paying for its follies made then. The present government has several men who have been working against
China, say high placed sources. Some leaders from the opposition too remain in league with the anti-China lobby that is functional in Kathmandu. China is thus in a constant fear of its own making.
The Indian distaste for SAARC continues because Pakistan is one of the influential member of the regional body whose presence is what has been ailing India from the very beginning of the regional movement. SAARC is like an incurable migraine for India.
As of today, frankly speaking, the SAARC is tentatively a dead body whose last rites remain to be performed. Rest in eternal Peace SAARC.
Now the turn is of the BIMSTEC to say good bye for all time to come. It may take some time for BIMSTEC to vanish in the ethereal medium yet what is guaranteed is that India itself will cause its premature death because most of the countries in this Bay of Bengal initiative were now virtually close to China which is what shall pain and finally ail India to the extent that a design shall be made for the end—ceremony of the said organization.
However, these countries assure India that they were with Delhi to which it is not. India can’t compete China.
For example, Nepal, Thailand, Myanmar and Sri Lanka are the countries in BIMSTEC that are tentatively closer to China than India. Bangladesh too tentatively has come closer to China in the recent months. Yet Bangladesh and Bhutan have some compulsions to remain glued with India.
Nepal is playing double under PM Oli. The rest of the countries understand that India promises only, China delivers and thus it is natural that the countries who accord top priority to the development of their country would opt for China over India and it would be this reason that shall annoy India to the hilt and encourage the latter to devise schemes that has the short cut to the demise of the BIMSTEC. Take it for granted.
The fact is that any institution that has India as a member shall die a premature death. Very simple and thus the net profit goes to the pocket of China-the world leader now.
BIMSTEC primarily is a proxy organization meant for and designed by Indian babus assisted by some Nepali political stalwarts who apparently worked for India but in a secret manner. It is also an initiative designed by the Indian establishment to benefit India and India alone by keeping Pakistan out from it. Basically SAARC and BIMSTEC resemble each other in that Pakistan could be seen in first and absent in the second. That’s all. Nothing more than that.
Thailand and Myanmar are somewhat honest partner of the BIMSTEC. These two countries too are not that far from China.
Nepal’s attachment was for the SAARC as one of the founding fathers, however, BIMSTEC is not Nepal’s brain but have just been there obeying to the instructions of the regional bully.
To recall, some perverted political brains in Nepal together with the rotten eggs from India had committed a political blunder of the Himalayan order by providing a shape to the growth quadrangle, a mini SAARC well within the full scale SAARC only to exclude Pakistan.
This enraged Pakistan to the extent that Islamabad preferred to leave SAARC for good, however, the active counseling of the Sri Lankan Foreign Minister Laxman Kadir Gamer, Pakistan stayed in the SAARC or else the regional body would have died some fifteen years ago. The growth quadrangle is dead. RIP.
India’s regular and humiliating instructions to the BIMSTEC leaders would tentatively annoy the leaders engaged in this initiative and they one fine morning quit the-larger-than the regional body for good. This is for sure to happen. It may consume some time but yet it is guaranteed that India shall cause this initiative to toe the fate of the SAARC.
One intelligent media man perhaps, Mr. Santosh Ghimire, has well-conceived the meaning of BIMSTEC for a common Nepali based in Kathmandu. Let’s listen to what he has to say more or less bluntly: “For common nepali people, BIMSTEC means nothing. BIMSTEC is something at least for now, because muddy roads in the valley are being blacktopped”.
PM Oli too has summed up the BIMSTEC meet in his speech yesterday. He says BIMSTEC can’t substitute SAARC. This speaks more than what remains to be spoken.
So when an well informed and knowledgeable media man like Ghimire sums up the meaning of the BIMSTEC for the common denizens of Nepal then what this branded white elephant with Indian trade mark has in store for the rest of the countries can be guessed in advance.
While this is the ground reality of the India plagued BIMSTEC then Nepal’s foreign minister Pradip Kumar Gyawali claims that this Bay of Bengal Initiative is all set to take a new direction in the days and years to come which he hopes is sure to benefit the countries engaged in this conglomerate.
Nepal shall benefit from BIMSTEC if the followers of Buddhism from Thailand, Myanmar, and Bhutan flock to Nepal as tourists. Lumbini trip could attract the Buddhists residing in these countries. The talk of Buddha circuit can be sold though. That is all.
Minister Gyawali is hoping against hope. To hope is not a crime, however, Minister Gyawali perhaps is yet to understand as to what India means to the smaller countries comprising this organization. He has yet to understand India. Hopefully time permitting he will learn.
Thailand is honest member of the BIMSTEC unconditionally.
India has met each and every leader in private and, as is usual and the Indian habit, and has pressed them hard to work in a way that suits to the interests of Delhi and were against Pakistan and China as well.
Nepal is likely to sign several agreements on Rail connectivity with India during Modi’s managed BIMSTEC meet being held in Nepal.
By time this story gets published, the BIMSTEC meet would have come to an end and thus what can be hoped that Nepal has once again been able to serve the Indian interests as desired by PM KP Oli-the former Medanta Hospital dweller.
But PM Oli talked about SAARC and Buddha circuit and saved his somewhat sliding prestige that appears to have been almost become Indo-pendent. This is the general allegation Mr. Prime Minister. “You have been cheating China”, claim matured observers.
No body now talks of SAARC. This is the structured policy of India. Oli has fallen in line with Modi at least this much is visible for now.
KP Oli, as Prof. Surendra KC says is just an ordinary political animal for whom politics is just a business for elevating the ranks of some of his close followers to plum political posts of the Nation-state.
For Dr. KC, PM Oli is a person who is neither a nationalist nor a man who has dedication in building the nation. He is just an opportunist political man who was in prison by “default”.
We don’t have that much idea about PM Oli as Dr. KC has.
Dr. KC may not be true to a greater extent but his observation as regards PM Oli are also not that far from truth as is evident from his political maneuverings that is being made available by the sad incidents that have of late rocked the nation.
Oli has failed in maintaining law and order situation in the country. Minors are being raped each and every day. The national population is cursing this government led by PM Oli.
Oli is helpless. He can do no service to the nation. His nationalist image stands deformed by serving the most unwanted political man in the South Asian region that is Damodar das from across the border.
A day shall soon come when this PM may pave the way for the demise of this system. Take it for granted.
As of Indian PM Modi, his inimical stance on Pakistan and China continues unabated. During the BIMSTEC he has trained the Bay of Bengal leaders to toe his line and denounce Pakistan. Modi needs no reason to denounce Pakistan nor his Modified media.
A Joint military drill of the entire BIMSTEC members is being organized in India. Nepal too is in the said drill this Nepal is no more a nonaligned state. Joining this drill means to send wrong signals to Pakistan and China.
However, the fact is also that the toxic reaction as regards Nav Jot Singh Siddhu’s recent Pakistan visit from the Indian television networks to the acidic criticism from political parties shows that the sociopolitical milieu in India is far too hate-filled at the moment to offer any glimmer of hope for a real rapprochement. While Sidhu was lavishly praised in Pakistan – Imran Khan even described him as an “ambassador of peace” – he was denounced by extremists on the street and rebuffed by serious politicians, even from the Congress.
All the sick minded people from India, academicians and media included, have defined Siddhu’s trip in a way that has suited to their personal political interests. The fact is also that Imran Khan is not just a cricket player now but instead Mr. Khan is a powerful political player in the South Asian horizon who shall in all likelihood match or even excel Modi’s performance.
His contacts with the US is shortly to begin come September 5, 2018.
Making acidic comments against Pakistan and its new PM is one thing but the politics underneath that is going is also more than surprising. Look how the Indian and Pakistanis are together for a joint drill exercise in Russia under the aegis of the Sanghai Coperation Organization. Perhaps in what could be taken as a first such event, military personnel from India and Pakistan are participating in an anti-terrorism exercise organized by the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in Russia. The exercise is aimed at enhancing cooperation between member states to deal
with the growing threat of terrorism and extremism.
The exercise in Russia will see tactical-level operations being carried out in an international counter-insurgency/counter-terrorism environment.
Around 3,000 soldiers from India, Pakistan, China, Russia, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Kazakhstan are taking part in the exercise.
The Indian contingent has 200 personnel, mainly from the infantry and other arms along with some from the Indian Air Force.
The training schedule for the Indian contingent includes target practice, house intervention drills, tactical and heliborne operations and combat conditioning, reports have said.
It is believed that the joint drills will build mutual confidence, interoperability and sharing of knowledge among troops of SCO members.
In previous editions, only Central Asian nations participated. This time the South Asian arch rivals too have joined the drill thanks Russian federation.
By the way, former army officials loyal to the BJP were at a loss to explain why it was wrong for Mr Sidhu to hug the Pakistan army chief when contingents from the two countries were trying to sort out the menace of terrorism jointly and that too in a far flung country-Russia.
In the meanwhile, Saudi Arabia and Iran are beginning a sort of competition for having increased influence with the new government led by Imran Khan in Pakistan. Both have big stakes involved.
Pakistan’s position is crucially important to both Riyadh and Tehran. Pakistan is the second-most populous country in the Muslim world and the only Muslim state with a nuclear arsenal. Over 1.5 million Pakistanis live in the kingdom. Pakistan and Iran share a 900-kilometer (559-mile) border in Baluchistan. Pakistan’s population includes a significant Shiite minority, perhaps as much as 30% of the country. In the Saudi-Iranian competition for influence in the Islamic world, Pakistan is crucial.
Prime Minister Khan says he wants Pakistan to play a “positive and constructive role” between Saudi Arabia and Iran. But how the new Captain balances his proximity with both of the two nation shall definitely determine his diplomatic acumen that ultimately benefits Pakistan.
Not surprising then for the last few decades President Putin has been warm to Pakistan which has led to increased expectations from Pakistan. The bilateral ties have witnessed many ups and downs however the recent positive trending relations between Russia and Pakistan is quite a new phenomenon. A number of significant changes have been seen in the foreign policy of both states which finally reached a level of joint collaboration for the stability in South Asia. Russia has special place in the foreign policy of Pakistan therefore the relations between both states are steadily growing, so writes Venita Christopher August 27 for Modern diplomacy.
Notably, during the Cold War era, Russia used to be one of the strongest ally of India and Pakistan had been closer to the USA. Now with the cold war over, the old equation too have changed to suit to the changing times.
China also wishes both India and Pakistan to come to terms. It is in this spirit China this Monday welcomed the joint participation by India and Pakistan in the ongoing counter-terrorism drill of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) in Russia.
According to the Chinese media, some 3,000 soldiers from China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, India and Pakistan were participating, as stated in the earlier paragraphs, in the “Peace Mission 2018” drill. India and Pakistan joined the bloc in 2017, writes the Economic Times dated August 27, 2018.
Back in Nepal, if the observations made by men who remain glued to the social media then what could be said fairly that a large section of the informed Nepali citizenry appear impressed by the austerity measures taken by the new Pakistan Prime Minister. Imran Khan, in his country.
While the social media in Nepal favors Imran Khan, Nepal PM Oli is all set to greet the Indian Prime Minister who has ever created problems for Nepal since he has assumed power in India. India of late has been creating troubles for the people of Susta village in Nawalparasi which falls in province 5. Reports claim that the Indian nationals bordering Susta village have been harassing Nepali citizens enjoying the backing of the Indian government.
Susta is a village in Nepal where people from across the border are engaged in road expansion drive that basically is Nepali land. The village is just inaccessible during the monsoon period as one could not cross the swollen narayani river which has no bridge and so the people of that village are forced to enter into Indian Territory to arrive at their own village.
The interesting part is that PM Oli has not dared to put the Susta road expansion issue with Indian PM Modi. Adding insult to injury, the vibrant Nepali media too prefers to skip any events wherein India is involved. This is simply unfortunate.
Oli is looking South by cheating the North? Perhaps yes! God bless Nepal.
In the meantime time, writes By VARSHA TORGALKAR in a major crackdown across India, police in the recent days raided the homes of several human-rights activists, lawyers and journalists, accusing them of instigating violence at a rally in Bhima Koregaon, a small hamlet in the state of Maharashtra, on January 1.
A case was registered by the police in Pune, a city in Maharashtra 180 kilometers east of Mumbai and just 40kmin from Bhima Koregaon, and investigators started to apprehend those who had allegedly instigated the violence.
A key cause behind the violence was the degrading historical caste divisions that continue to exist in India. A number of human-rights and civil-liberties activists and lawyers attended the rally and questioned the policies of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government. Maharashtra is ruled by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which also leads the federal government.
Back on domestic front: Nepali population perhaps wish to find one Imran Khan among the crowd of the leaders who instead of minimizing the State expenses appear more than interested in exploiting the national exchequer for their personal ends. Nepal has more than thousand white elephants who thrive on State money. Guess who they were? That’s all. @telegraph nepal