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Monday, 2 February 2009

From Today's Papers - 02 Feb 09

Terror Dossier
NSA belies Mukherjee’s claim
Narayanan says Pakistan did respond with a set of queries
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, February 1
In what may cause embarrassment to the UPA government, National Security Adviser MK Narayanan has virtually contradicted External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee on Pakistan’s response to the dossier of evidence provided by India to the neighbouring country on the 26/11 Mumbai attacks.

While Mukherjee yesterday categorically stated that Islamabad had not given any official response to the Indian dossier, Narayanan, considered a close confidant of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, said Islamabad had, after the receipt of the dossier, reverted to India and asked a number of questions, to which even answers had been provided.

‘’So as far as we are concerned, we believe that Pakistan is making an attempt to arrive at the truth. I assume that they (Pakistan) are yet to receive reply to the second set of queries they have made,’’ Narayanan told Karan Thapar in the ‘Devil’s Advocate’ programme.

Narayanan’s statement is being seen as a sign of confusion within the government as it does not match what the External Affairs Ministry and the Foreign Minister had been saying.

Only yesterday, Mukherjee had issued a strong statement, saying: “I will like to underline that we have so far not received any official Pakistani response to the Indian dossier or official intimation on the outcome of the investigations.’’

And taking a line which was almost at variance with the position of Mukherjee, the NSA went on to add that Pakistan was certainly taking things seriously and was proceeding in a manner that one would expect an investigative agency to proceed.

Islamabad, he pointed out, had been claiming that the Pakistani state was not involved in the attacks and that non-state actors were behind it. ‘’If the Pakistani state is not involved, why they should not be honest about it. They should be as honest as they can be. But we will wait and watch.’’

India, He said, was not impressed with the “cosmetic” steps taken by Islamabad so far to check the activities of the terrorist organisations, operating on its soil. ‘’What we really want is that the perpetrators or the masterminds of the Mumbai attack should be brought to justice. If Pakistan is honest about its intentions and believes that terrorism needs to be stamped out from its country, then it’s a very simple matter-handing over those who have been named in the FIR.’’

On the detention of some of the known terrorists by Pakistan, Narayanan said they were in fact “house guests” and wondered whether it could be described as detention. He also reiterated India’s demand that Pakistan hand over to this country the fugitives from Indian law who had taken shelter in the neighbouring country. He said India was disappointed with some of the comments made by British foreign secretary David Miliband during his recent visit.

NIA gets two IPS officers as members

Press Trust of India

Sunday, February 01, 2009 5:05 PM (New Delhi)

Two IPS officers have been cleared to join the newly set up National Investigating Agency (NIA) as members. But, the selection of one of the members, who belongs to a southern state, has raised eyebrows due to his track record -- failing to make it to the list of empanelled officers to serve in the rank of IG at the Centre.

Of the two officers, S Balaji is a 1977 UP cadre IPS, who is at present an Additional Director General of Police in his parent cadre. He was among the first who have been cleared to join the NIA. The agency had got its first Chief last month itself when the Government appointed Radha Vinod Raju as its Director General, official sources said.

Balaji, who has had a stint in the Special Task Force of the UP, will bring with him the knowledge about the countering terrorism.

Another IPS officer who will join as one of the Officers on Special Duty (OSD) had raised some questions as he had not been included in the list of officials, who could serve at the Centre in the rank of an IG. The empanelment was done strictly on his or her merit, annual confidential reports and ability to crack cases.

The official had an unceremonious exit from the CBI after an internal inquiry allegedly found him indulging in leaking of information related to some cases.

Besides the issue of the officer's inclusion, the NIA has hit more road-blocks as some of the states have refused to relieve their IPS officers. The states include Jammu and Kashmir, Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand, the sources said.

Jammu and Kashmir and Uttar Pradesh have rejected the Centre's request to extend deputation of one of its officer at present working with the CBI, they said.

Can Pakistan meet India halfway on 26/11?

Sheela Bhatt in New Delhi | January 30, 2009 | 15:49 IST

What will the Congress party do before the Lok Sabha election to help it recover loss of face for the complete security failure along the Western coast that led to the Mumbai terror attacks?

As political parties discuss election strategies behind closed doors, the most debated question in New Delhi is whether America is in a position to help the Indian government get something substantial and real from Pakistan to assuage the hurt feelings of the people after the Mumbai attacks.

Karl F 'Rick' Inderfurth, US Assistant Secretary of State for South Asian Affairs in the Clinton administration, was quite subtle when asked him how America can help India in getting Pakistan to act.

"I think America is in position to help but probably behind the scenes. Pakistan should recognise as well the views the US has expressed after the Mumbai tragedy. The US hopes Pakistan will take concrete action. Let the judicial process proceed against the people who have been detained. Let the terror training facilities be shut down."

One of the most talked about propositions is whether Pakistan will extradite terrorists wanted by India.

A senior Congressman had recently argued in a conversation with that, "If we bring back (Jaish-e-Mohammad founder) Masood Azhar whom the BJP (Bharatiya Janata Party) dropped at Kandahar (in return for the crew and passengers on the hijacked Indian Airlines aircraft) then the issue of terrorism will clinch the electoral victory for the Congress."

Minister for External Affairs Pranab Mukherjee and Foreign Secretary Shiv Shankar Menon had set the bar when they repeatedly told the media that India wants Pakistan to extradite the perpetrators of the Mumbai attacks and criminals like Dawood Ibrahim, who are involved in previous cases of terrorism.

So the Congress party's political pressure and the government's demands are understandable, but are they feasible or practical? In fact, experts agree that diplomacy demands that Pakistan should act for the sake of the broader issues behind India's demands.

Former ambassador M K Bhadrakumar thinks, "The US would know India-Pakistan relations would freeze unless Islamabad meaningfully responded to our demands and expectations, which, in turn, will not be in the interests of regional stability."

It is interesting to recall past experiences with Pakistan, which were also conducted behind the scenes.

There was an extraordinary case when Lieutenant General Hamid Gul, then chief of the Inter Services Intelligence under Benazir Bhutto (1988 to 1990) agreed to help A K Verma, then chief of the Research and Analysis Wing. Gul agreed to push back four Sikh deserters of the Indian Army who had crossed over into Pakistan.

Gul later alleged it was Benazir who had handed them over to R&AW. The charge proved costly for her because it was used by the President Ghulam Ishaq Khan to dismiss her in 1990.

Actually, they were neither 'extradited', 'deported' or 'handed over'. In a secret meeting it was decided that the ISI would 'push' these people across the border in the dead of the night and inform R&AW.

"A team of Indian para-military forces was posted at that point and they quietly arrested the four as they crossed the border," claims a source, now retired, in the intelligence community who knew about the operation. Pakistan made it a condition that the news should not be leaked to the media.

This did not bind Pakistan legally and there wasn't any need to admit that these Indians were in 'hiding' in Pakistan. The deserters did not know that they are being pushed into India.

Another case of Pakistan's behind the scenes cooperation is much more fascinating.

In 1992, under US pressure, the ISI asked Talwinder Singh Parmar of the Babbar Khalsa, Canada, Lal Singh alias Manjit Singh of the International Sikh Youth Federation, Canada, and Sohan Singh the head of the Second Panthic Committee to leave Pakistan. All three men had been given sanctuary in Pakistan.

The intelligence agencies of the US (in respect of Lal Singh), the UK (in respect of Sohan Singh) and Canada (in respect of Parmar) in collaboration with R&AW worked to implement the entire operation.

Lal Singh flew directly from Karachi to Mumbai without anybody getting a hint of it. Sohan Singh flew from Karachi to Kathmandu and then sneaked silently into India from the porous Indo-Nepal border. Parmar flew clandestinely to India via Singapore. Lal Singh was arrested by the Gujarat police when he went from Mumbai to Ahmedabad. Sohan Singh was arrested by the Punjab police and Parmar was shot dead by the Punjab police in an encounter.

So can the back-room channels produce any surprise results this time?

"Since 1947, Pakistan has never handed over a Muslim suspect in any crime to India -- whether Indian or Pakistani. The past instances of discreet cooperation with India were in respect of non-Muslim terrorists -- all Sikhs. There are still some Khalistani terrorists wanted by Indian investigators, who are living in Pakistan. It may quietly push them into India after alerting Indian authorities. It is unlikely to do so in respect of Muslims," says B Raman, a former senior officer at R&AW.

A New Delhi-based former foreign secretary told "I don't see any possibility of Pakistan handing over any terrorist to India. It will wreck their civil government."

Can Pakistan hand over IndiaN-born gangster Dawood Ibrahim?

G Parthasarathy, former high commissioner to Pakistan, told, "I don't think it will. If Dawood is handed over he will expose all his links with the ISI including the links he has established between Al Qaeda and the ISI."

"I don't see the (Asif Ali) Zardari government having the influence to overrule the army to hand over any suspects to India," he added.

However, Raman argues that, "This has nothing to do with opposition from the army. While we should not have high hopes of any Pakistani cooperation in bringing the conspirators of the Mumbai attacks to justice either in Pakistan or India, it is important for R&AW and the ISI to have a discreet liaison relationship so that their officers and chiefs can informally discuss such matters away from the glare of publicity instead of shouting at each other through the media."

When Inderfurth was asked the same question, he said, "That depends on who should take responsibility to bring them to the process of justice. The fact is that Pakistan is saying their judicial system should be responsible for any action planned in Pakistan."

(According to a Pakistani television channel, a report submitted to the Pakistan government by the investigators looking into India's dossier claims that the Mumbai attacks were planned outside Pakistan.)

When asked if in the near future any terrorists would be handed over, Inderfurth said, 'Certainly, Indian nationals like Dawood should be handed over to India. For its nationals, Pakistan should determine how to bring them to justice."

When asked if America is in position to help India in the extradition of terrorists, he said, "Probably we can behind the scenes."

Bhadrakumar agrees with Inderfurth, "I expect a denouement so that the broader process of easing of tension resumes. The US can make this happen away from publicity so that the question of the Pakistan government having to "surrender" does not -- should not -- arise."

Yoga is the new mantra for Indian Army in Kashmir

Kavita Suri
JAMMU, Feb. 1: As a part of its initiative to keep troops in good shape in the insurgency-hit northern sector and also to increase the endurance of troops posted at the world’s highest battlefield at Siachen, the Indian Army had turned to yoga and has achieved wonderful results. As against 44 cases of suicide and 10 cases of fratricide in 2005, only 34 cases of suicide and a single case of fratricide were reported in 2008.
At heights ranging between 11,000 to 21,000 feet, with temperatures that can plummet to minus 60 degrees Celsius, Armymen have taken up yoga for the past couple of years in the Northern Command including Siachen glacier.
Yoga is a good option for the troops especially since any rapid training exercise in the rarefied air with very low oxygen concentration can lead to physical disorders. Soldiers posted on the icy mountains of the Siachen are exposed to the physical extremes of high altitude and hypoxia, besides the psychological stresses of isolation, monotony, separation from family among others. Yoga can prove to be very beneficial also for those who are working in militancy-hit areas.
“Troops of the Northern Command are deployed in harsh terrain and withstand extreme weather conditions. Continuous vigil, relentless counter-infiltration and counter-terror operations coupled with unresolved domestic problems become the causative factors of stress. Because of this, the Army has taken a number of measures to reduce the cases of suicide and fratricides,” informs Colonel DK Kachari, Public Relations Officer, ministry of defence, Northern Command.
“While our efforts have substantially brought down the related incident levels, a constant effort is to be made towards creating a healthy and happy working environment and development of camaraderie,” he added.
Interestingly, a major initiative was training of counselors. Two separate categories of counselors have been trained by specialists. Of these, one comprises Junior Commissioned Officers from the Army Medical Corps who are to be available at a formation for monitoring stress management programmes, training and advice.The second category comprises Junior Commissioned Officers and Non Commissioned Officers from units who have again been trained to act as a fried and guide at the functional level. They are capable of identifying indicators of stress and taking or suggesting immediate remedial action to their seniors.

India lags behind Pakistan in missiles

2 Feb 2009, 0217 hrs IST, Rajat Pandit , TNN

NEW DELHI: With active help from China and North Korea, Pakistan has surged well ahead of India in the missile arena. The only nuclear-capable ballistic missile in India's arsenal which can be said to be 100% operational as of now is the short-range Prithvi missile.

Though the 700-km Agni-I and 2,000-km-plus Agni-II ballistic missiles are being "inducted" into the armed forces, it will take "some time" for them to become "fully-operational in the numbers required".

Defence sources said the armed forces were still in the process of undertaking the "training trials" of Agni-I and Agni-II to give them the requisite capabilities to fire them on their own.

Of the two, the progress report of Agni-I, tested for the first time in January 2002 to plug the operational gap between Prithvi (150-350 km) and Agni-II missiles, is much better. The Army has already conducted two "user training trials", one in October 2007 and other in March 2008, of the Pakistan-specific Agni-I missile.

The fourth test of 3,500-km Agni-III, which will give India the strategic capability to hit targets deep inside China, is also on the anvil now. But Agni-III, tested successfully only twice in April 2007 and May 2008, will not be ready for induction before 2012.

Then, of course, design work on India's most ambitious strategic missile with near ICBM (intercontinental ballistic missile) capabilities, the 5,000-km range Agni-V, which incorporates a third composite stage in the two-stage Agni-III, is also in progress. "We should be ready to test Agni-V by 2010-2011," said an official.

So, in effect, the missile report card is rather dismal at present. "Unlike Pakistan, our programme is indigenous. But a strategic missile needs to be tested 10 to 15 times, over a variety of flight envelopes and targets, before it can be said to be fully-operational. A missile cannot be dubbed ready just after three to four tests," said an expert.

Keeping this benchmark in mind, only Prithvi can be dubbed to be fully ready. Defence PSUs like Bharat Dynamics Ltd, Bharat Earth Movers Ltd and Mishra Dhatu Nigam Ltd, in fact, are stepping up production of the different Prithvi variants.

Army, for instance, has orders worth Rs 1,500 crore for 75 Prithvi-I and 62 Prithvi-II missiles, while IAF has gone in for 63 Prithvi-II missiles for over Rs 900 crore.

Navy, in turn, has ordered Dhanush missiles, the naval version of Prithvi, with a 350 km strike range, for its "dual-tasked" warships, INS Subhadra and INS Suvarna.

India wants to gatecrash into the very exclusive club of `Big-Five' countries like Russia, US and China, which have both ICBMs (missiles with strike ranges over 5,500-km) and SLBMs (submarine-launched ballistic missiles), before 2015.

The SLBM quest is specifically crucial since it's the most effective and secure leg of the "nuclear weapon triad", with land-based missiles and aircraft capable of delivering nuclear bombs constituting the first two components.

The initial range of K-15 SLBM being developed by DRDO will, however, be limited to 750-km, far less than the over 5,000-km range SLBMs brandished by the `Big-5' countries.

The plan is to go for higher strike ranges after the initial K-15 missiles are integrated into the indigenous nuclear-powered submarines being built under the secretive ATV (advanced technology vessel) programme.

Pakistan Army chiefs vow to back government

By Fasihur Rehman Khan, Correspondent
Published: February 01, 2009, 22:57

Islamabad: The powerful committee comprising the three armed forces chiefs of Pakistan has announced its support for government efforts to create a national consensus in the wake of internal and external threats.

The committee has also reviewed the situation on the border with India.

The Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee comprises Army, Air Force and Navy Chiefs and is headed by the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

The committee oversees the overall security situation as well as matters related to the three forces. The chairman, who is also a four-star general, is also responsible for the country's nuclear and missile arsenal.

This meeting of the Committee gains significance as Pakistan is officially responding to India regarding the Mumbai attack probe conducted by its agencies. Internally, analysts say, the clash between PPP which rules central government, and PML-N, that rules the biggest and most populous Punjab province, in the wake of planned lawyers' long march is also a matter of concern for the armed forces of the country.

In case there is a clash between protesting lawyers and PPP government on March 9 when the lawyers want to stage a sit in at the Constitution Avenue in Islamabad and cripple the government functioning, the role of the armed forces and their support to civil armed forces like police will be crucial.

To what extent will the military go to aid of the civilian government in such an eventuality is a big question in Pakistan these days, analysts believe.

The armed forces still wield a lot of influence in Pakistan as they directly ruled the country more than 30 years of the total 62 years of existence of Pakistan.

Saturday's meeting of the Committee was chaired by Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee General Tariq Majid, and attended by Army Chief General Ashfaq Pervez Kiyani, Air chief Tanvir Mahmoud Ahmad, Navy Chief Admiral Nauman Bashir, Secretary Defence, Director General ISI, Ahmad Shujaa Pasha, and DG Strategic Planning Division.

Call the Pakistan bluff

It has now become increasingly clear that India is being naïve in expecting Pakistan to cooperate in the investigation into the Bombay attacks. Judging by the things that Pakistani diplomats and politicians said in Islamabad, Davos, London and Delhi last week, Pakistan’s attitude is defiant and unhelpful.

I’ve tried hard to understand the Pakistani response. After all, only a week before the Bombay incidents, we were talking about a no-first-use nuclear commitment from Islamabad and were hopeful that President Asif Zardari’s friendly statements marked the beginning of a new era in India-Pakistan ties.

Could it be, I wondered, that in our anger over Bombay we were being unreasonable in our demands? Were we expecting too much of Pakistan? Otherwise, why is it that even the so-called Pakistani thinkers and intellectuals who regularly appear at peace seminars and Track Two meetings are being so unsympathetic to India’s complaints?

The Pakistani position, insofar that I can understand it, has two primary components. The first comes from government sources and goes something like this.

Of course there are terrorists in Pakistan. But they are not part of the State machinery. Rather they are freelance jihadis who target Pakistan even more than they target India. Yes, Kasab is a Pakistani and so perhaps were many of the other Bombay attackers. But this, by itself, proves nothing. The 9/11 terrorists who brought down the World Trade Center towers were Saudi Arabians. Nonetheless, the United States did not take the attitude that this meant that the attacks had the support of the Saudi government. It recognised that the terrorists were as much against the Saudi regime as they were against the US administration.

The second component to the Pakistani response comes from the peaceniks, professional intellectuals and TV soundbite-wallahs. According to this view, Pakistan is engaged in a crucial struggle for its soul. The last election, for all its imperfections, at least installed a civilian government and led eventually to the exit of Pervez Musharraf. But now that India is talking tough and blaming Pakistan for acts it has no control over, civilian democracy seems to be in danger.

India should accept the genuine condolences of the Pakistani people and should stop ‘war-mongering’ because this will only have the effect of handing Pakistan back to the army.

I have listed both components of the Pakistani response in full and as fairly as I can because I do believe that peace between India and Pakistan is too important a matter to be destroyed by anger, rage, war hysteria or a thirst for revenge.

But here’s my problem: neither of the things that Pakistanis say in their defence strikes me as being at all convincing.

The entire Pakistani position is based either on lies and deceit or a selfish disregard for India’s own interests.

Let’s take the official position. Frankly, I do not believe that the Bombay attacks were entirely the work of “non-State actors” (in Zardari’s phrase).

But even if you do take the Pakistani position at face value, there are several problems with what Islamabad is saying. In effect, Zardari is now telling us roughly what Musharraf told George W. Bush in the aftermath of 9/11 about Pakistan’s links with jihadi elements, with the Taliban and with al-Qaeda. “We hate them as much as you do but what can we do? We have no control over these terrorists.”

The US response, according to Pakistani accounts, was to dismiss this defence and to threaten to bomb Pakistan back into the Stone Age unless it cooperated with the American War on Terror.

Faced with this ultimatum, Musharraf backed down, cut off aid to the Taliban and forced his security services to start arresting al-Qaeda leaders who were at large in Pakistan and to hand them over to the Americans. The US was also allowed to set up huge CIA and FBI stations on Pakistani soil from which it monitored anti-terrorist operations. Further, the ISI began handing over information on terrorist plots against Britain and the US to the SIS and the CIA — one reason why these countries have been relatively free from terror in recent years.

If Pakistan is sincere, if it really does have no control over terrorists, then it should do for India what it did for the United States. We should be allowed to interrogate terror suspects. Intelligence should be shared with us. And those terrorists who are wanted for acts of violence in India should be handed over to us.

The Pakistanis argue that India has not yet built up a convincing case against many of those we claim are terrorists and
that Pakistani laws prevent the government from handing such people over.

Even if this is true, there are still two objections to be made. The US has rarely handed over the kind of evidence that would stand up in a court of law. But Pakistan has handed over suspects anyway. Secondly, nobody in Pakistan disputes that the prisoners released in return for the hostages on IC-814 made their way to Pakistan. Of them, Latram went back to kill people in Kashmir, Omar Sheikh killed Daniel Pearl and Masood Azhar recruited more people for the jihad.

A minimal measure of Pakistani sincerity would be to return these former prisoners to India. But Islamabad has always refused to even consider this.

Further, we know that the IC-814 hijackers also found safe haven in Pakistan. We know their names. Nobody can dispute that they are terrorists. But Pakistan will not cooperate in finding them.

And finally, what about Dawood Ibrahim? Pakistani magazines carry photos of his home. We know that he is no freedom fighter; just a gangster who helped organise the 1993 Bombay blasts. But Islamabad refuses to even acknowledge that he is in Pakistan.

So, even if we accept Zardari’s claim about non-State actors, there’s still a lot that Pakistan can do to help us. Nor is this unprecedented: it does more every day for the US.

And yet, Islamabad refuses to lift a finger to help. Push Pakistanis about the double standard and they will say, “But America is our friend of long-standing and you are not.”

So that’s what it boils down to: help your pals (especially when they threaten to bomb you back to the Stone Age) and let terrorists kill your enemies.

It’s good to have that straight. Forget all this peace talk. When it comes to the crunch, India will always be their enemy.
Nor is the second component of the Pakistani response — the one offered by professional peaceniks and so-called
intellectuals about helping them strengthen democracy in their country — very convincing.

One defining characteristic of Indian peaceniks, for all their naïveté, is that they do not let foreigners judge India’s internal affairs. When Pakistanis hold forth on the horror of the Gujarat massacres, even the most die-hard peacenik will stand up and point out that as bad as those were, it was Hindus from all over India who denounced the Gujarat government.
Similarly, when so-called Pakistani intellectuals go on about how bad things are in Kashmir, our peaceniks point to the success of the recent Assembly elections. And when Pakistanis tell us how bad the BJP is, our intellectuals point out that it is not so simple: A.B. Vajpayee launched the peace process in Lahore and L.K. Advani travelled to Pakistan to laud M.A. Jinnah’s secularism.

Contrast our pride in India and our reluctance to let anybody interfere in our internal affairs with the pathetic Pakistani plea to amend our foreign policy so that we can influence their internal affairs.

When Musharraf was in office we were requested to oppose him so that a civilian government could get elected. And now we are being told that it is our duty to strengthen Zardari’s position against the military. Apart from the utter and complete lack of national self-respect this displays (would we ask Pakistanis to help us strengthen Manmohan Singh against L.K. Advani?) it is also nonsense.

It is not our business to save their joke democracy. As far as we are concerned, they attack us no matter who is in charge. The Kashmir operation was launched by Benazir in 1989. Nawaz Sharif was Prime Minister during Kargil.

We must be guided by our national interest not by their invitations to meddle in their internal affairs.

With each passing day, even as I try and understand the Pakistani response, I am more and more pessimistic. It is not my case that war is the answer.

All I’m saying is that peace is not possible.

India can not dare to attack Pakistan: Hamid Gul

RAWALPINDI: Former ISI chief Lt Gen (Retd) Hamid Gul has said India can not dare to attack Pakistan adding it is only dreaming false dreams of pursuing hegemonic designs in the region with the support of US besides destabilizing Pakistan.

Hamid Gul said this while addressing “Defence of Pakistan” conference held here under Pakistan Ex-Service men Association Sunday.

He indicated India tried to target Pakistan nuclear assets several times in the past but all its efforts were foiled.

Time had come to fully eliminate military interference in politics, he said adding stability could come in the country only this way.

He went on to say Attal Behari Vajpayee had recognized Pakistan sovereignty in Lahore but former general Pervez Musharraf adventurism earned bad name for the country all over the world. We are still suffering now for his misadventurism, he added. Therefore, this military dictator should be put to trial at every cost, he demanded.

Al-qaeda was taking roots across the world due to US led war on terror, he observed.

Lt Gen (Retd) Asad Durrani said country was passing through critical juncture of its history due to ill conceived polices of the rulers.

JI Amir Qazi Hussain Ahmad said all the retired generals should tell publicly if they were ready or other wise to return privileges being enjoyed by them.

Brig (Retd) Mehmood told all the retired military officers were ready to return illegal facilities.

JUI-F leader Ghafoor Haidri said success in war against terrorism could be achieved through unity.

Former army chief Gen (Retd) Aslam Baig said this was irrefutable fact that government had lost its writ in Balochistan and FATA and new government had aggravated the situation. New US President Barack Obama was also working under the influence of Jewish lobby and he had forgotten his pledge for resolution of Kashmir, he added. Obama had declared Pakistan a battlefield , he maintained.

PML-Q leader Mushahid Hussain Sayyed said a single political party alone could not resolve the problems facing the country and only all the parties together could address them.

PML-N leader Khawaja Asif while seeking apology from the nation for their political affiliation with Gen (Retd) Late Zia ul Haq said president Zia caused harm to national unity and tried to undermine spirit of patriotism.

A joint declaration calling for reinstatement of deposed chief justice of Pakistan Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry, trial of former president Pervez Musharraf on the charges of abrogation of constitution twice, his involvement in Kargil misadventure, attack on Jamia Hafsa and murder of Akbar Bugti, immediate end to military operation in FATA and withdrawal of troops there- from , steps for stopping drone attacks, recovery of missing persons, restoration of due status to Dr Abdul Qadeer Khan, adoption of aggressive diplomacy for resolution of Kashmir and removal of economic disparities was adopted at the conclusion of conference.

This was also announced that all the organizations and participants of the conference would take part in the Long March on March, 9.

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