Hafiz Saeed’s meeting with an Indian journalist must be seen as part of Islamabad’s sinister strategy, writes Abhijit Bhattacharyya
Hardly anything remains secret or classified these days, owing to the availability of open-source information thanks to real-time reporting by the electronic media and the mass access to information technology. It is, therefore, time to recapitulate the life and times,the acts and utterances, of Hafiz Saeed, about whom some Indian celebrities appear to be intensely enamoured of. In fact, the list of Indian admirers of Saeed appears to be growing by the day, thanks to India’s benign tradition of tolerating wrong-doers, including terrorists and non-State actors operating from across the border.
Hence, the recent meeting between an Indian scribe and the alleged mastermind of the Mumbai massacre is neither surprising nor shocking. The Indian scribe appears to have tried hard to project himself as an ace, super-sleuth journalist. However, his admission to the charmed world of back-door diplomacy with Pakistan needs to be analyzed in the backdrop of a sustained and orchestrated conflict by Islamabad against India.
Some of Saeed’s utterances merit closer scrutiny. In November 1999, the founder of the Jamat-ud-Dawa is reported to have stated, “Jehad is not about Jammu & Kashmir only. About 15 years ago, people might have found it ridiculous if someone told them about the disintegration of the USSR. Today, I announce the break-up of India... we will not rest until the whole of India is dissolved into Pakistan.”
Again, in October 2008, Saeed, allegedly, stated, “India has blocked the Chenab waters and constructed the Baglihar Dam. The only reason all this has happened is because jehad-e-Kashmir has been abandoned by the rulers. India understands only the language of jehad, which cannot be suppressed. In fact, with some support, jehad can break up India like the former USSR.”