Pigeon, a beautiful white and a sometime dim white bird, is taken as a symbol of peace. In many instances to project a vivid impression, caged pigeons are freed, to soar high in the air. Although pigeons come in many different colours, depending on their breed and area, the colour white is the most common in the species. Historically, the pigeons were a favoured bird of errant monarchs; they used to keep them as pets and to satisfy their aesthetic sense.

Then, with the passage of time, the mere pet made itself useful by delivering posts and letters, both short distance and long distance. Kings, knaves, princes, and common denizens used them to deliver their mail as a quick source. A horseman may have to follow a properly laid path to reach the desired destination to which the mail is addressed by the sender but a pigeon can zigzag through the air freely and can reach the receiver more swiftly. The method employed was easy and without any niches. One family or person used to tame a pigeon and when they thought that the flying mailbox was ready to begin its duties, they would drop it to the house or area where most of the letters were to be sent. Then they would, while returning, take along a pigeon reared in that area. Now, both pigeons adequately familiar with their respective area, would fly easily and let the exchange of letters take place.

Mughals, Romans, and Greeks used pigeons as their private postmen. Henry Teonge, an English cleric and royal navy chaplain, recorded in his repertoire that a properly maintained and regular pigeon postal service was being used by merchants between Iskenderun and Aleppo in the Levant.

The pigeon saga between two sworn enemies, India and Pakistan, began precisely in 2010 when a pigeon was detained near the border, over the fears of spying. India readily put the blame of it on Pakistan. They gave a statement, suggesting that the message was encoded, and thus could not be sent by anyone else other than the Pakistani agencies. Then, at that time, India, without commencing a further investigation, blamed Pakistan conveniently and as anticipated.

From that date onward, it never really ceased. In 2013, Indian security forces found a dead falcon with a small camera attached to it. It is still unknown whether it was employed by Pakistan to spy on the Indian border forces, or by some insecure boyfriend to keep track of his girlfriend’s activities from the other side of the barricades.

The author, Jack Kerouac, writes in one of his books, ‘Does Kitty Kat know there is a pigeon on the clothes closet?’ Now I want to answer his question with: ‘I’m not sure about Kitty Kat sir, but the Indian border forces definitely know.’

In another example, C.J. Roberts says that he is envious of pigeons as they don’t have a care in the world beyond eating, sleeping and defecating in the parks. Yes, very rightly delivered by him the luxurious yet mundane routine of a layman pigeon, but it clearly seems that he has never been to Pakistan; otherwise he would be aware of the special duty pigeons, which, apart from the aforementioned leisure have an erroneous task to deliver the coded messages. 

The recent pigeon which got caught a month ago with a note attached to its leg was basically captured by BSF and then, when it was delivered to the Pathankot police station, inspector Rakesh Kumar told the local media that the note which was attached to the leg with a string carried the signature of Lashkar-e-Taiba and read the following statement, ‘Modi, we are not the same people from 1971. Now each and every child is ready to fight against India.’

To make a headline with such amusingly ridiculous fodder in the international media is a very strong indication of how apt the Indian authorities are at differentiating between an actual threat and a mere shenanigan.

The blame which India has subjected Pakistan to, no matter how non-serious, still embodies something considerable enough to attract the attention of the media around the world. India maintained that this act of espionage has unveiled the mendacity of Pakistan, which it was trying to camouflage in the robe of a talks initiative. Even this stance engendered India’s position as a clown, who, to divert attention from the primary events of utmost importance (the on-going Kashmir issue), has been indulging itself in the act of devious trickery. 

The on-going rough verbal and diplomatic fracas between India and Pakistan no doubt has made both countries extra conscious and chary of taking all the necessary steps in making sure that no breach of security at any point or in any possible manner takes place. Even then, to malign someone without any concrete or visible vestige of proof, is not just condemnable but also adds to the reasons why the world is not believing anything said by India against Pakistan.

A pigeon, in this day and age, when technology is forcefully making old school tactics surrender, can be considered anything but a source of espionage.