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India and its Catch 22 issue

June 1, 2007
“There are two roads…if you take one, you are doomed. And if you take the other you are doomed too!” This is more or less a definition of the Catch 22 phenomenon. Some of us would have read the Joseph Heller’s novel by the same name and I am pretty sure it’s a good one too…but what has India got to do with the Catch-22 phenomenon??

If you had seen the news on 31st May, 2007…the Ministry for External Affairs “demanded” its Sri Lankan counter-part that it shouldn’t approach either China or Pakistan to fight against the LTTE. What makes this extremely interesting also being a Catch-22 situation….after the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi by LTTE, India vowed that it will never forgive LTTE. But 16 years later, LTTE did accept that it was a big mistake and gave a formal apology…but even now India hasn’t forgiven what LTTE had done. On the flip side, one of the main ally of the present UPA government, DMK is known to be inclined towards LTTE…more precisely for the rights of Tamils residing in Sri Lanka. And we have seen several times in the recent past, DMK and its allies voicing opinions regarding this issue.

What makes the entire issue a Catch-22 for India is that, it doesn’t supply arms to Sri Lankan Army which is fighting against LTTE and trying to subdue the civil war; neither does it agree to be the mediator between the Lankan Government and LTTE during the recent peace talks….(can’t believe it was Sweden which agreed to do so!!!….and Thank God, someone came forward!!!)….and now…now that Sri Lanka wants an external support to fight against LTTE….India says that it is the Big Power in the region, so Sri Lanka shouldn’t go to other countries for help. What’s even more surprising is that, India has always been a sovereign state and it’s actually hard to believe that it’s acting like a big brother to its neighbouring nation. Lets say even if it agrees to supply the arms given a condition that Lanka asks for help from India….I wonder if DMK would agree to it!!!….you just can’t allow your country to fight against your own people residing in other countries!!…can you??

Which brings us to our second issue…..owing to its foreign policy which doesn’t allow India to indulge in other country’s matters….it just cannot sit silent to allow China or Pakistan to come anywhere near its shores….such is the level of trust we have with our neighbours!..[:(]

It would be interesting to see the developments in the near future on this issue and I am actually wondering if we would be able to get ourselves out of this issue without hurting anybody. But in the end I guess someone has to lose. Whether it’s the “ego” of the UPA govt to not forgive the LTTE and thus playing a major role in the peace process….or will it be conceding the Sri Lankan government to go ahead with its plan of asking for help from either China or Pakistan to come so close to the Indian shores which might have some future implications…..well, we will have to wait and see….!!!

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