Skip to main content

Crisis called Islamic State (The Indian Express)

The IS has claimed a horrific bombing at the dargah of the Sufi saint Hazrat Lal Shahbaz Qalandar in Sehwan in Pakistan, which killed more than 70 people. The group is clearly looking for new pastures and sensational “victories” at a time when it faces big military setbacks in Iraq. What is undeniable too is that Pakistan has a ready-made ecosystem for the IS/Daesh to set up shop.
Even before this, there were reports of IS links with factions of the Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan, and with the Lashkar-e-Jhangvi. Militant groups in Pakistan — the kind that have India in the cross hairs, such as the Jamaat-ud-Dawa or the Jaish-e-Mohammed, or those ranged against non-Sunni Islamic sects — all have much in common with the IS, except perhaps the latter’s access to oil wells. Pakistan has received many “blowback” wake-up calls since 2001, but none could be a clearer call to action than the IS heralding its arrival in the country. In 2015, the Pakistan Army conducted a military campaign against the Taliban, but tackling the IS — ensuring it is not allowed to grow on Pakistani soil — will need more than just a selective targeting of “bad” jihadists.
Blast Near Sindh's Lal Qalandar Sufi Shrine In Pakistan Kills Atleast 75 People
The first step would be an overhaul of Pakistan’s security policies, including the use of militant proxies to conduct foreign relations in the region. For India, where IS has been desperate to find a foothold, the dangers of it finding a home next door are obvious.
Over the last five days, there have been 10 attacks, big and small, across Pakistan, from Lahore to Quetta, to Peshawar and Waziristan in the north-west frontier and now Jamshoro in Sindh, each claimed by a different group. Thursday’s was the second big attack in the Sindh hinterland in two years. Likely the work of a suicide bomber, among those killed were a large number of women and children. Despite being home to Karachi, the safe haven for jihadi terrorists of many hues, Sindh has been the most plural of Pakistan’s four provinces, and home to many of Islam’s mystic traditions, insulating it for years against the terror attacks sweeping the rest of the country. For the same reasons, it is also a finger in the eye of Sunni extremist groups and an obvious target.
Over the last five years, radical seminaries have mushroomed in rural Sindh, spewing their toxins into once peaceful backwaters such as Sukkur and Shikargarh. Irrespective of the IS, and because of it, what should be worrying Pakistan is that terror is taking root in areas that were formerly bulwarks against extremist ideologies.


Popular posts from this blog

Cloud seeding

Demonstrating the function of the flare rack that carries silver iodide for cloud-seeding through an aircraft. 
Water is essential for life on the earth. Precipitation from the skies is the only source for it. India and the rest of Asia are dependent on the monsoons for rains. While the South West Monsoon is the main source for India as a whole, Tamil Nadu and coastal areas of South Andhra Pradesh get the benefit of the North East Monsoon, which is just a less dependable beat on the reversal of the South West Monsoon winds.

SC asks Centre to strike a balance on Rohingya issue (.hindu)

Supreme Court orally indicates that the government should not deport Rohingya “now” as the Centre prevails over it to not record any such views in its formal order, citing “international ramifications”.

The Supreme Court on Friday came close to ordering the government not to deport the Rohingya.

It finally settled on merely observing that a balance should be struck between humanitarian concern for the community and the country's national security and economic interests.

The court was hearing a bunch of petitions, one filed by persons within the Rohingya community, against a proposed move to deport over 40,000 Rohingya refugees. A three-judge Bench, led by Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra, began by orally indicating that the government should not deport Rohingya “now”, but the government prevailed on the court to not pass any formal order, citing “international ramifications”. With this, the status quo continues even though the court gave the community liberty to approach it in …

India’s criminal wastage: over 10 million works under MGNREGA incomplete or abandoned (hindu)

In the last three and half years, the rate of work completion under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA) has drastically declined, leading to wastage of public money and leaving villages more prone to drought. This could also be a reason for people moving out of the programme.

At a time when more than one-third of India’s districts are reeling under a drought-like situation due to deficit rainfall, here comes another bad news. The works started under the MGNREGA—close to 80 per cent related to water conservation, irrigation and land development—are increasingly not being completed or in practice, abandoned.

Going by the data (as on October 12) in the Ministry of Rural Development’s website, which tracks progress of MGNREGA through a comprehensive MIS, 10.4 million works have not been completed since April 2014. In the last three and half years, 39.7 million works were started under the programme. Going by the stipulation under the programme, close to 7…