Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Assessment of Situation in Shala Bhata

India tried a tiny talk with Nawaz Sharif and is now faced with a tiny Kargil. From what we know now that is how we can define the situation in Shala Bhata in Keran. Indian troops are locked in a close fight with Pak special troopers from its notorious Border Action Team for the ninth day.

Though Infiltrators in Shala Bhata do not enjoy effective control but area is still far from being "secured" by the Indian Army.Most alarming thing coming out of the Press Conference of GoC XV Corps is that Pak BATs are constantly trying to break the Indian Army's cordon from Pakistani side which means a complicated situation.

This also explains in part as to how all this may have happened. The first batch of infiltrators crossing on 23rd September were effectively intercepted by the Indian army. It is very clear that more compact batches were pushed later and Indian cordon was engaged by Pak BAT. This is in contrast with previous experiences when infiltrators once pushed inside Indian territory used to be "abandoned".

However, this time Pak BATs are trying to attack and break through the Indian cordon on Indian side of LoC even on the ninth day. This indicates two things- first, infiltrators trapped inside Indian cordon are no ordinary infiltrators; second, Pakistani side has something more than a mere big infiltration attempt on their minds. This is not just another area domination attempt with tactical overtones but confrontational attitude with political undercurrents. To deal with such a situation some aggressive tactical manoeuvring by the Indian troops will be required. A clear political message is pre-requisite for that.

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