After meeting the Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on the sidelines of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) summit at Sharm El-Sheikh, Prime Minister Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani stated on July 18 that during the talks, he also raised the issue of Indian interference in Balochistan. Although our security forces are successfully coping with the Taliban militants in the Malakand Division and Waziristan, yet the situation has deteriorated in Balochistan since April 8, this year after the death of three Baloch nationalist leaders. Now subversive events like targeted killings, attacks on buildings, oil pipelines etc. have intensified in the province. In this drastic scenario, military operation will be counterproductive in Balochistan where external hands have succeeded in inciting the general masses to oppose the country's federation through the Baloch feudal lords (Sardars). Notably, Pakistan's civil and military officials have been revealing that the Indian secret agency, RAW, Israeli Mossad and other foreign intelligence agencies are involved in supporting the separatist movement in Balochistan. In this respect, on April 23, in the in-camera sitting of the Senate, Interior Minister Rehman Malik displayed documentary evidence of Indian use of Afghanistan to create unrest in Balochistan. It is believed that the main aim of the in-camera session was also to show the engagement of American CIA and other external agencies as part of a conspiracy against Pakistan - especially Balochistan because at this stage, Islamabad did not want to publicly point towards the US. During the ongoing military operations, ISPR spokesman, Maj Gen Athar Abbas has repeatedly pointed out foreign hands in helping the insurgents led by Baitullah Mehsud, Maulana Fazlullah and those headed by militant commanders in Balochistan. In this regard, on July 4, Pakistan's Foreign Office spokesman Abdul Basit without naming CIA revealed: "The evidence of foreign powers' involvement in the destabilisation of Pakistan will be shared with relevant countries." On June 28, NWFP Governor Awais Ghani disclosed that some world powers were trying to divide Pakistan, adding that if he was not the governor, he would have exposed them. The matter is not confined to Pakistan's official statements, in the recent past, by citing her visits, Christine Fair, a leading US journalist, while unveiling India's covert operations in Pakistan from Indian consulates, located in Afghanistan and Zahidan disclosed: "The Indian officials have told me privately that they are pumping money into Balochistan." Nevertheless, external hands in Balochistan are part of the plot against Pakistan which is the only Islamic nuclear state - not tolerated by the US, India and Israel who have been trying to virtually besiege our country as noted through a perennial wave of suicide attacks and bomb blasts. In this context, by covertly backing the Baloch nationalist leaders, foreign elements have been fulfilling a number of clandestine aims. In Balochistan, people, openly, accuse Pakistan's intelligence agencies for the abduction and killing of their leaders. This is what the external plotters intended to achieve. It is mentionable that Balochistan is replete with mineral resources. Its ideal geo-strategic location with Gwadar seaport could prove to be Pakistan's key junction, connecting rest of the world with Central Asia. It is due to the multiple strategic benefits that the US, which signed a nuclear deal with India last year, intends to control Balochistan as an independent state in containing China and subduing Iran. Owing to these reasons, America and India are creating instability in Pakistan by backing Baloch separatists to complete their hidden agenda. Taking cognisance of these realities, during the first visit of Pakistan's President Asif Ali Zardari to Beijing, Pakistan and China on October 15, 2008 signed 11 agreements to enhance bilateral cooperation in diverse sectors. China also agreed to supply nuclear reactors to Islamabad. Since then, this cooperation has been enhancing day by day. Moreover, plot by the external hands in Balochistan could also be judged from the Indian Defence Review, of Jan-Mar 2009. The Review, while suggesting the disintegration of Pakistan, indicated that for New Delhi, "this opens a window of opportunity to ensure that the Gwadar Port does not fall into the hand of China. Afghanistan will gain stability...India's access to Central Asian energy routes will open up." At this critical juncture, our elected governments at the centre and province must resolve this sensitive issue by redressing the grievances of the Balochi peoples through political means; otherwise external hands will keep on exploiting various issues of Balochistan, causing irreparable damage to the integrity of the country. The writer is a foreign affairs analyst E-mail: