The book which has been in news yesterday, is Kashmir The Vajpayee Years, by A. S. Dulat, ex RAW Chief.
It is being reported that the book is critical of Vajpayee Government’s handling of the hijacking of Indian Airlines flight IC 814 in December 1999. It’s also being reported that Former PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee was somewhat hurt by the 2002 Gujarat riots and the handling of it by the Gujarat Government.
Close to a decade and a half after the two events, it’s difficult to comment on the two incidents. But one thing can be said for sure, the much marketed hard stand on Pakistan and terrorism, becomes soft, the moment the parties such as BJP come to power. When in power, they don’t think twice before forming an alliance with a separatist party such as PDP (in Kashmir). Not only that, whatever Vajpayee and his party said in the past; when the party came to power, it behaved like a gelly(jelly), and started the bus to Lahore in 1999, the Agra Summit in 2001 and finally the hand of friendship extended to Pakistan in Srinagar in May 2003. I’m not saying, trying to forge friendship with a neighbor is wrong; I’m just pointing to the dichotomy. The same applies to the present Modi Government. When it came to power in 2014, some editorial rightly said, Right winged parties (such as BJP) are always extra eager to befriend a problematic neighbor. That’s irrespective of what they say inside the country against Pakistan, rightists are seen more than willing to stoop. As a consequence, during Vajapayee’s tenure 1999-2004, the country saw repeated setbacks, first the Kargil war, the hijacking of Indian Airlines flight IC 814 in December 1999 and the Parliament attack two years later.
The recent agreement, which PM Modi signed with Bangladesh, where India traded less land (in terms of area) with Bangladesh; would have created a ruckus, had it taken place during any other Government’s regime.
… will read the book, lets see what it actually says.