Almost everyone knows that 26 January- the Republic day is one of the most important days in independent India’s history. On this date, India got its constitution in 1950. Since that day, the India celebrates it which great pride and displays its military might to the world through the means of a military parade in Delhi.This year the Pakistan Army sent across, four balloons with Happy Birthday written on them in the Barmer sector of India. India being on full alert, with the French President as the chief guest 26 Jan parade had no option but to shoot down these balloons by its top of the line Sukhoi-30 MKI fighter air crafts. The big question, however, is that why did Pakistan do this and how should India have responded?Each of the four balloons was three metres wide, filled with helium gas. Pakistan purchased these Balloons produced in America. The balloons were flying at 25000ft, higher than the 18000 ft flying ceiling of an attack helicopter. The Indian Air Force Radars was the first to detect the balloons. India had no option but to scramble two Sukhoi 30 MKI fighter jets and a helicopter to shoot them down.
It might be recalled that about a year ago Indian intelligence agencies had issued an alert that Pakistani Army protégé jihadi organisation Lashkar –e-Toiba had bought balloons from America which might be used for terror. These Balloons had Happy Birthday written on them. Needleless to say it was just a joke by the Pakistan Army on India or it was an experiment to test Indian counter reaction and response time. Whatever may be the reason, one thing that stands out loud and clear is that a small bankrupt country like Pakistan, living on doles from America and China also has the timidity to play pranks with India and laugh away to glory?
What did India do in? Nothing? The MOD only asked the MEA to take up the issue with Pakistan. Is this what is expected of someone having a 56-inch chest? The problem is not 56-inch chest or not — but the bureaucrats and the file pushers who rule this country and advise the politicians. Why these politicians do not take the advise from the armed forces is a mystery which only they can solve.
Can India even think of playing this kind of prank with China on its most important national day? And if it did, will China just sit tight doing nothing except an administrative reprimand like India has done?
The answer is a big No. Don’t forget that perceptions play a critical role in international relations. Can any country even dare to play pranks with Russia under Putin or Netanyahu’s Israel both of whom take their national security very seriously? If not – then why India– a world economic and military power? The answer is not far to seek.
The political masters who rule India do not have no knowledge of the military matters and prefer advice by equally clueless bureaucrats who control the military in the name of civilian control over the military. The post of chief of defence staff system was sanctioned in 2003, to bring in the synergy between the three services as well as give single point advice to the political masters. It is blocked by the bureaucrats controlling the Defence ministry because whose fiefdom was at stake. As a result, India continues to be a weak state and laughing stock of the world without any strategic goals.
This balloon incident soon after Pakistani sponsored jihadi attack on Pathankot air base on 2 Jan Pakistani army will under no circumstance allow its civilian government to make friends with India. It is a matter of bread and butter for the Pakistani army. If India-Pakistan develops good relations then how will Pakistani army retain its number one position in Pakistani hierarchy?
It is high time India woke up and stopped having dreams of friendly ties with Pakistan. The in armed forces cannot do without the CDS system which should be done earliest. Let our political masters take strategic military advice from our troops.
India could have retaliated to the Pakistani balloon by sending similar high-flying balloons and toy drones in POK where the Pakistani army is said to be running 14 jihadi training camps. Then Pakistan would have had no option but scramble its F-16 fighters to shoot down these Indian high flying objects with peace and friendship written on them.
Pranks must be countered with similar pranks, ceasefire violations with counter violations, proxy war with proxy war,
It is only then that Pakistan would come running to India wanting to become a genuine friend? Action on the ground is what makes the difference and not just endless empty talks.