Probably coming as a belated national confession on the issue of burgeoning militancy working under the auspices of govt officials, the Pakistan parliamentary panel on external affairs today advised its government to stop providing active support to armed militant groups. The panel also demanded action against militant groups for destroying the Jammu and Kashmir cause.
This condemnation of state-sanctioned support for armed militants in the country suggests Pakistan's hand in separate attacks on Jammu and Kashmir soil. Unlike India, the President and the Prime Minister of Pakistan give approval for the setting up of these panels. So the parliamentary panel not only has the mandate of the parliament, it also has the concurrence of the top executives of the country. The parliamentary panel on Pakistan external affairs advised the ministers to use their influence for regular monitoring of these elements.
The panel confessed that the state needed a change in direction which must begin with the reprobation of supporting armed struggles in Pakistan. It also claimed that supporting armed struggles in the state was dangerous to the country where it was thriving in, and reiterated that it was an endangerment to the cause of the country.
Reacting on the news, Congress leader PC Chacko said, "This is a positive step. And when the military in Pakistan and the Pakistan govt is not at all helpful for a peaceful solution for the India-Pakistan issues, at least some sane voices we are hearing from Pakistan. This is the external affairs standing committee of the Pakistan parliament. They made the submission that they should not abet or aid the extremist groups in Jammu and Kashmir. Today the problem is that the Pakistan army or the Pakistan govt or different arms of the Pakistan govt are supporting the militants in Kashmir."
BJP leader Siddharthnath Singh had this to say on the new development: "Comments coming from the Pakistan parliamentary committee is very encouraging and certainly points to what the govt of India has been pointing to Pakistan that the terrorism coming from Pakistan must end, the supports given to the militants and the separatists in the Kashmir valley must end. They have pointed it rightly; it is encouraging, but at the same time there's a lot to be done. The govt of India is waiting, and watching the walk-the-talk on what Pakistan does with terrorism."
Many say that this confession is an indictment of Pakistan's policy which renders support to the existence of armed militant struggle consisting of different militant groups. The Pathankot attack might have served as a precedence for this confession as it disrupted the Foreign Secretary level-talks between India and Pakistan.