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June 16, 2019

What Ajit Doval’s new five-year term means?

Lahore

June 16, 2019

Modi Sarkar, after its re-election, has re-appointed Ajit Doval as the National Security Adviser, giving him five-year tenure and a cabinet rank “in recognition of his contribution in the national security domain.”

According to reports, Doval, a 1968-batch IPS officer, worked as an intelligence officer for over 33 years during which he served in India’s northeast, Jammu and Kashmir and Punjab. Doval had also done diplomatic assignments in Pakistan and the UK and later headed the IB’s operations wing for over a decade. The BJP considers him “among the best operational brains within intelligence circles.”

One wonders over the past five years what Doval has achieved as India’s National Security Adviser. In fact, the list of his failures is long.

Doval has alienated the whole population of held Kashmir and transformed its discontent into a full raging freedom movement. Most Indian analysts agree that Doval’s hawkish policies have changed the face of Kashmiris’ ideological drift and hardened their attitudes towards the Indian state. His policies have resulted into the UN talking about the HR violations in the held Valley for the first time. He has entangled the Indian Army into a never-ending quagmire, a nightmare that has engulfed and considerably consumed its morale and operational strength. Doval should have celebrated if India were able to reduce its army and paramilitary’s presence in the Valley, which is certainly not the case. The glaring failure is for all to see.

On the rebellion going on in the northeast, Doval again has not been able to deliver. The insurgency rages and the Indian Army loses its best at the hands of Naxalites. Moreover, Doval’s hard stance against Sikhs has reinvigorated the Khalistan movement. Hundreds of Sikhs have disappeared in Indian dungeons, thousands have been humiliated at the hands of law-enforcement agencies and millions don’t want to remain part of India anymore.

With regard to Pakistan, Doval orchestrated and renewed the policy of stage-managed encounters and a surgical operation that never matured except in Bollywood script writing. In the post-Pulwama operation, the mismanagement and bungling destroyed nine Pakistani trees near Balakot, two IAF aircraft and the Indian armed forces’ morale.

The Indian interference in Balochistan has come out in the open under Modi and Doval. But what exactly the Indian-sponsored sub-nationalist organizations have achieved in Balochistan except deaths of several hundred more people and getting its main asset caught by the Pakistani intelligence for the whole world to see.

What has Doval achieved in Afghanistan? Putting all eggs in one basket have now got the Indians worried and they can foresee little role for New Delhi in the post US withdrawal from the war-torn country. The stubborn facts cited above belie claims of successes, the short-sighted narrow minded tactical maneuvers show general malaise and confusion. The real disconnect with the ground situation, skewed regional view and lack of flexibility finally become a strategic threat to own national security. Unless Mr Ajit Doval has looked into his failures and correctly anaylsed them and there is a striking departure from the past tested but failed policies, the new five-year term of Indian NSA could lead to even more humiliations for India.

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