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Sunday, 19 December 2010

From Today's Papers - 19 Dec 2010





Pak Army ‘paid wages’ to Lashkar  Washington, December 18 The Pakistan army “paid wages” to terror organisation Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) and sustained it, according to a diplomatic cable unveiled by whistleblower website WikiLeaks.  According to the January 2009 cable, then Indian Foreign Secretary Shivshankar Menon discussed Pakistan and the bilateral relationship in context of the US political transition with the visiting US Assistant Secretary for South and Central Asian Affairs, Richard Boucher, and the then US Ambassador to India, David Mulford.  Boucher and Menon were in full agreement on the need to ensure that Pakistan eliminate LeT, but disagreed on some tactics.  Boucher recounted for Menon his impressions from his visit to Pakistan that President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani were “committed to ridding the county of terrorism and had made real strides with the terrorist groups operating in the tribal areas, but that they now understood they also had to tackle Punjabi-based groups like the LeT, which was much more difficult”. “We’re not giving them any breaks: they must eliminate LeT,” the cable quoted Boucher, as saying, adding that it would require persistence, and that the US hoped to encourage a continuous flow of information, but Pakistan still preferred the mechanism to be a high-level dialogue.  Menon replied that Pakistan was “nowhere near the threshold of proving sincerity” in its response to the Mumbai attacks and had so far taken no “irrevocable” steps toward eliminating LeT as a threat to India, said the cable.  Boucher shared that the US had not reached the conclusion that Pakistan's security services were directly involved in the Mumbai attacks and asked Menon to “tone down” the public pressure, as “provoking the Pakistan military made constructive cooperation less likely”, to which Menon replied: “What we have seen so far leads us to the opposite conclusion”.  “Let’s not insult one another by telling a story that the Pakistan army was not involved,” said Menon, highlighting that the “Pakistan army paid wages to LeT and sustained the organisation, and until these ties were severed, India would continue to regard the Pakistani security services as complicit in the Mumbai attacks.” — ANI

Govt to decide on IAF role in tackling Naxals, says Air Chief  Hyderabad, December 18 Air Chief Marshal P V Naik today said that IAF has engaged helicopters in transportation of security forces and surveillance purpose in some Maoist-hit areas and it was up to the government to decide on its further role against the rebels.  "Four IAF helicopters have been doing the job for the last 6-8 months in some of the Maoist-infested areas after the Ministry of Home Affairs asked us in this regard," he told reporters on the sidelines of the Combined Graduation Parade of flight cadets of IAF at the Air Force Academy at Dundigal here.  "We have been carrying out casualty evacuation, observation, recee and transfer of troops in forest areas near Jagdalpur in Chhattisgarh. These are some of the roles IAF is doing in the Maoist-hit areas and at present we don't envisage undertaking any other roles.  "It is up to the government and they will decide on what (more) roles to undertake," Naik, said when asked if IAF had any plans to actively participate in the operation against the Naxals. — PTI

Indian army chief arriving on Monday   President to confer honorary title on him  Added At:  2010-12-18 11:30 PM     Last Updated At: 2010-12-18 11:30 PM      *        The Himalayan Times - Saved Articles(s)        The headlines has been added to your saved article(s)       To View your saved article(s)please Click Here »        Close     *     *     *     * Bookmark and Share     * [Decrease font size]     * [Increase font size]  HIMALAYAN NEWS SERVICE  KATHMANDU: Upholding the longstanding tradition between the Nepali and Indian armies, President Dr Ram Baran Yadav, Supreme Commander of the Nepali Army, on December 22 will confer the honorary title of Chief of the Nepali Army Staff on Chief of the Indian Army Staff General V K Singh.  Gen Singh is arriving in Nepal on December 20 on a four-day visit.  According to a military source, President Dr Yadav will confer the honorary title of Chief of the Army Staff of Nepal on Gen Singh amid a special ceremony on December 22.  Nepal and India have a six-decade long tradition according to which both the Nepali and Indian armies honour each other’s army chiefs with the honorary title.  During his four-day stay, Gen Singh is scheduled to call on Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal and Minister for Defence Bidhya Devi Bhandari.  Gen Singh will also hold a meeting his Nepali counterpart Gen Chhatra Man Singh Gurung and discuss issues of bilateral military cooperation.  The online edition of The Times of India has termed Gen Singh’s Nepal visit ‘aimed at bolstering bilateral defence cooperation with the landlocked country, where China has made several strategic inroads’.  This will be the second visit of an incumbent army chief of India in a year to receive the honorary title of Nepal’s army chief.  The then Chief of Indian Army Gen Deepak Kapoor was conferred the honorary title of chief of Nepal army in January.  CoAS Gurung was also conferred with the honorary title of Chief of the Indian Army Staff by Indian President Pratibha Patil during Gen Gurung’s official visit to India last year.  A source at the Directorate of Public Relations of the Nepali Army informed that Gen Singh will also be visiting the elite Mountain Warfare Centre and will fly from Jomsom to Pokhara.  Nepali Army Spokesperson Brigadier Gen Ramindra Chhetri, however, said the itinerary was yet to be finalised.

Indian Army exposed in another land scam Anubha Bhonsle CNN-IBN  Pune: The Indian Army has been exposed in another shocking land scam. Now the Army is being accused of encroaching over 69 acres of private land near Pune cantonment.  The Army has all along denied it owned the land but in a sudden twist claimed ownership and compensation when a part of the land was handed over to the Pune Municipal Corporation to build a road.  The 69 acres of land, called Survey No. 233 A, adjacent to the Army cantonment in Pune's Lohegaon area valued at about Rs 800 crore is at the heart of a controversy.  The Army says its their land while an individual, Manish Milani, claims it belongs to his father Harish.  Apart from being mentioned in land records a defence land is also supposed to feature in what's called a Key Location Plan (KLP), which is the Army's version of the Master Plan.  So if Survey No. 233 A in Lohegaon was indeed Army's and it should be part of the KLP, a document available with CNN0IBN written by the Defence Estates Officer debunks the Army’s claim.  "A Key Location Plan was prepared in 1994 and shows 233 A was not included in the plan. It further adds this office has time and again stated that there is no documentary evidence supporting to show the land is owned by the Defence," the document says.  Ironically, the Army finds no merit in this explanation and in a shocking order the Headquarter Pune Sub Area in July 2009 ordered for destruction of documents.  "The letter that 233 A is part of KLP, the earlier letter that it is not so can be destroyed," order reads.  So it is the Army that has alleged manipulation of land records to press forward its claim. The case is now with the CBI since early this year.

Nepal Army readies red carpet for Indian Army chief TNN, Dec 18, 2010, 04.10pm IST KATHMANDU: Nepal's army is readying the red carpet for the imminent visit by Indian Army chief, Gen Vijay Kumar Singh, who, in addition to being conferred the honorary title of general of the Nepal Army, will also be escorted to the army's elite Mountain Warfare Centre in freezing northern Nepal and the its divisional headquarters in the west.  Gen Singh, who is arriving in Kathmandu Monday, will start his three-day official visit by laying a wreath at the memorial in Tundikhel, next to the Nepal Army headquarters, to honour the soldiers who died while defending their country. He will also be given a guard of honour by the Nepal Army and hold talks with his Nepali counterpart, Gen Chhatraman Singh Gurung. In December 2009, Indian President Pratibha Patil had conferred the honorary rank of Indian Army general on Gen Gurung in observance of the nearly six-decade old practice between the two armies of the two neighbouring countries to honour each other's army chiefs as honorary generals of their own armies.  On Tuesday, Gen Singh will visit the Mountain Warfare Training Centre in Jomsom in Mustang, the northernmost district adjoining the Tibetan border. The centre, established nearly 40 years ago after Nepal's army disarmed Tibet's Khampa warriors, who were waging a guerrilla war against the invading Chinese army, currently trains members of the Indian Army as well as personnel from other countries like the UK, France, Italy and Sri Lanka.  From Jomsom, he will be visiting Pokhara city, which had more than its fair share of limelight this week, when police arrested former crown prince Paras Bir Bikram Shah from a posh resort for rowdy behaviour. Pokhara is one of the main recruitment centres for the Indian Army's Gorkha brigade and also the site of the regional pension camp. Gen Singh will interact with Indian Army veterans, including those who were disabled during warfare, and hand over scooters to six of them as well as sewing machines to soldiers' widows. He will also visit the Nepal Army's western divisional headquarters headed by Major General Nar Bahadur Khandel.  The investiture ceremony will take place on Wednesday, after a visit to the Nepal Army's Peacekeeping Training Centre at Panchkhal. President Ram Baran Yadav will confer the honorary title of general of the Nepal Army on Gen Singh at a ceremony in Shital Niwas in Kathmandu. Gen Singh will receive an insignia, a sword and a citation. The ceremony over, he will meet Nepal's caretaker Prime Minister Madhav Kumar Nepal and Defence Minister Bidya Bhandari.  The ceremonial, good-will visit comes almost 11 months after his predecessor Gen Deepak Kapoor visited Nepal.

Indian Army Chief Taken For A Ride By His Own Staff  Posted by Web Editor on Dec 16th, 2010 Indian Army Chief Taken For A Ride By His Own Staff  Print This Post Print This Post Email This Post Email This Post     Indian Army Chief Taken For A Ride By His Own Staff       * Why Is Ruling PPPP’s website joining Indian media in attacking Pakistan Army?     * Indian media and army chief misled by a junior Indian intelligence analysts’ report  This story shows how India is a large country with the mindset of a mouse. It demonstrates how Indian spy agents spend hours dissecting a public website of the Pakistan Army. In this case, an Indian intelligence officer analyzing the names of Pakistani martyrs posted on Pakistan Army’s official website thought he ‘discovered’ something. He shared it with Indian Army chief. Now all major Indian newspapers are celebrating this discovery. Amazingly, one of the official websites of President Zardari’s PPPP is also joining Indian celebrations.  Here, a Pakistani website,, shows how the Indian military might have been taken for a ride by incompetent intelligence officers.  SPECIAL REPORT | Thursday | 16 December 2010 WWW.PAKNATIONALISTS.COM  ISLAMABAD, Pakistan—Indian Army chief General V. K. Singh is still smarting from several recent hits. Apart from land scams, there are corruption cases personally involving the army chief, and an internal power tussle involving him and supporters of his predecessor Gen. Deepak Kapoor. The latest hit came from an unexpected quarter: United States.  A recently leaked cable from US embassy in New Delhi has ridiculed Indian army’s Cold Start doctrine as a ‘mix between myth and reality’ and described Indian soldiers as ‘slow and slumbering’, not a good assessment for the next superpower.  To top it off, the website of India’s premier domestic intelligence agency, CBI, remains inaccessible almost two weeks after a hit by Pakistani cyber activists responding to an unprovoked Indian cyber attack, possibly by Indian intelligence, that defaced almost forty websites belonging to the Government of Pakistan.  So how does Asia’s next military power react to all this and pull up the troops’ sagging morale?  Answer: the way Gen. Singh did this week. He picked up a Pakistani army soldier’s name, a man who worked for the Pakistani mission in New Delhi and died three years ago from kidney failure, and claimed the man was on a suicide mission in India.  You would think a statement from India’s highest army officer would be based on serious reporting and analysis. But as we have explained in earlier reports, India’s foreign and military policies often have a lot in common with the country’s racy musicals of the Indian film industry: they are noisy, tacky and exaggerated.  What prompted the Indian army chief to step in and personally comment on this dangerous disclosure? The answer, believe it or not, is a data-entry error. How the data entry error occured  How the data entry error occured  ‘This is how they were duped’  Indian intelligence’s cyber watchers were carefully studying the website of the Pakistan Army and particularly a page on the site called Martyrs Corner, where the names of Pakistani martyrs on the Afghan border are regularly updated.  According to official documents released by, a Pakistani think tank focused on defense-related issues, Naik [or Corporal] Zulfiqar Ahmed was assigned to guarding duties at the Pakistan High Commission in New Delhi. He was duly accredited by the Indian Ministry of External Affairs. He developed a kidney problem in November 2007 and died at the Ganga Ram Hospital in the Indian capital. Eight Indian doctors examined his condition and endorsed the cause of death. He was embalmed and then handed over to the Pakistan mission for burial back home.    That was November 2007.  Fast forward to December 2010.  A Pakistani data-entry officer mistakenly added Nk Zulfiqar’s name to the Martyrs Corner at the official Pakistan Army website.  A screen shot of the wrong entry shows how the mistake was made. The entry form is standard and most deaths have been a result of suicide attacks by terrorists. So ‘suicide attack’ is often written in the ‘Operation’ column.  The data entry officer did not pay attention to a glaring contradiction a couple of lines below where Nk Zulfiqar’s cause of death is clearly written as ‘Neptrotic Syndrome at Ganga Ram Hospital N/Delhi’.  But apparently one of Indian intelligence’s analysts who analyzed the Pakistani data twisted the material to conclude the dead corporal was on a suicide mission in India.      A junior Indian military intelligence officer got excited over this ‘discovery’. What is not clear is how someone as senior as the Indian army chief was misled into believing this was such a credible piece of intelligence information that warranted a personal comment from India’s army commander.  This is how Gen. Singh commented on this news:      “I have nothing to say on what they (the Pakistan Army) has put up on its website.  But if it has, then it clearly show what their intentions and ways are and what their next move will be,” Singh told reporters here when asked about the Pakistan Army’s website posting. All I can say is we have to be more alert and only then we can protect the people and our troops.”  Even more scandalous is how India’s major news organizations are hand in glove with the Indian intelligence. Not a single Indian newspaper or TV news channel has deviated from the official story script. Pakistani analysts know in detail about India media’s impressive unanimity in toeing the official line without double checking, but this realization escapes American and British media.  Big names in the India media ran the same report produced by the Indian intelligence without independent verification. Here are some of the headlines:  -          Hindustan Times: Pak ‘owning’ bomber makes its intentions clear: army chief  -          Rediff News: Pak honors ISI agent on suicide mission in India  -          Times of India: ISI suicide agent is Pak army man  -          Even MSN’s Indian office didn’t escape publishing Indian military propaganda, here’s MSN News: ISI man on Delhi ‘suicide op’ is martyr on Pak Army’s website  -          Indian Express: Delhi hospital confirms ISI agent’s death, details vanish from Pak site  ‘Et tu, PPPP?’  The stunning part is how a Pakistani website that is part of ruling PPPP’s network of online propaganda promptly in endorsed the Indian intelligence reports and supported the reports published by the Indian media. The site runs propaganda material for President Asif Zardari and other PPPP stalwarts. Senior journalist Hamid Mir accused this site of being run from Washington by Mr. Zardari’s close aide and envoy in Washington Husain Haqqani.  The PPPP site, called LUBP, in a post titled, Pakistan army owns up the ISI man on a suicide attack mission in India, said:      “Online factories of suicide bombers: An ISI production: LUBP has been boldly stating for the last many years that Pakistan Army’s continued policy of jihadi and sectarian suicide attacks […] Now it has been once again proven without doubt that jihadi and sectarian suicide attacks are an integral element of the Pakistan Army’s military strategy”  The link shows this PPPP site relying heavily on India propaganda. It did not verify if the Indian news is correct and posted two links, both of Indian TV channels, to prove the Indian allegations.  The Indian army chief is nincompoop who is willing to buy a junior intelligence analyst’s ridiculous story based on a minor data entry error. But what is PPPP’s excuse for endorsing Indian propaganda? And does President Zardari’s media adviser Mrs. Farahnaz Isphahani know what the party’s media cell’s kids are doing online?



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