August 30 is the International day of Victims of Enforced Disappearances. Sub-nationalists in and outside Pakistan find it convenient to exaggerate Pakistan’s record on the issue and try to make a lot of hue and cry. In order to set the record straight, there is a need for informed debate on the issue.

To start with Indian Illegally Occupied Jammu and Kashmir (IIOJ&K), the world has to acknowledge that the occupied area has become a cauldron of human tragedy, a year’s lockdown since 5 August 2019 was preceded by atrocities by Indian occupation Army for 72 years.

In IIOJ&K, there have been more than 8000 cases of enforced and involuntary disappearances between 1989 and 2009, according to the Association of Parents of Disappeared Persons (APDP), a collective of family members who campaign against enforced disappearances and are in search of their loved ones. This figure may have crossed 20,000 since 2019 as Indian army and intelligence agencies have picked up Kashmiri youth between the ages of 10 and 30 without telling their whereabouts to the parents.

Should Pakistani liberals, human rights champions and activists be raising the wholesale enforced disappearances in IIOJ&K as part of their major campaign? This is a million-dollar question. Exploitation of the issue of enforced disappearances in Pakistan is part of a larger agenda, which needs to be understood.

Our paper on Indian subversion in Pakistan published in a leading newspaper had highlighted how India and her subnational surrogates in Pakistan and western countries are trying to create chaos and even conduct terrorist activities in Pakistan. Extracts from that article are included here, even at the cost of repetition:

Post 9/11, India found a favourable strategic environment for sabotage and subversion in Pakistan and this was taken to a new level of violence through state-sponsored terrorism by India. There are three major factors which point to loss of space for India to conduct subversion in Pakistan: Afghanistan’s changing situation; Indian periphery waking up to Indian state-sponsored terrorism and political interference; and more recently, the Ladakh blunder. Taking help from our previously published articles in newspapers, we would like to elaborate these three factors:

India invested in building a terror network along with some hostile intelligence agencies in Afghanistan and the Iran. Kulbhushan used both Afghan and Iranian soil to foment terror in Pakistan. Indian support to defunct terror entities like the BLA and the BRA and chaos generators like fake sub-nationalists of FATA are no more hidden from the eyes of the world. Indian Miltablishment and RAW, after playing a long and dirty game in Afghanistan, feels its investment in drowning in Kabul River.

The Indian Army is demoralised and there is a growing call for politico military and intelligence leadership to step down, as they not only slept on the Chinese reclaiming of its territory on LAC but also failed to appreciate Chinese intent and prepare a contingency plan. The current spate of Indian state-sponsored terrorism in Balochsistan and even Karachi points to the frustration with the lost cause. RAW has to find a bogey to deflect attention away from its failure in Ladakh, and pushing her proxies like BLA, Altaf Hussain, Senge Hasan Sarang (GB dissident) and Sindhu Desh is akin to whipping the dust by a donkey who has run short of fodder.

To conclude, Indian support to her proxies in Pakistan’s neighbourhood stands exposed and the international community is well aware of that.

Since Pakistan’s kinetic victory, the areas bordering Afghanistan have suffered hugely as terrorist organisations who fled Pakistan have taken refuge in Afghanistan and are being sponsored, funded and supported by the NDS-RAW combo.

Pakistan has moved towards economic prosperity in the shape of CPEC. India and West who have often shown their discomfort at CPEC are bent upon disrupting it by creating biased, false, and fake narratives against Pakistan’s military. The subnationalist combo is a joint front to oppose Pakistan’s progress, create ethnic divide and put the state under pressure. The same front is also working to act as spoiler in peace process and is trying to delay and disrupt US-Taliban peace agreement.

Pakistan has repeatedly invited foreign independent journalists and activists to visit the propagated area and observe the progress state has affected with new educational institutions, economic hubs and road connectivity.

PTM, BLA, Sindhudesh activists have no support in masses especially in their own ethnic communities and rely on propaganda through social media to portray their plight.

Pakistan has already exposed the shady financial dealings and meetings of so-called Pashtun and Baloch dissidents with Indian and Western Intelligence agencies. Some of these Baloch activists have lost credibility as US has declared them as a global terrorist organisations Sub-nationalist Baloch dissident leadership is enjoying luxurious life in Europe and is trying to create chaos in Balochistan through their proxies. The data of disappearances is hugely fudged and exaggerated. Numerous terrorists from BLA, after being killed or captured have been identified as people named in disappeared/missing people lists, giving strength to the fact that missing/disappeared people have actually fled from Pakistan to join these terrorist organisations based in Afghanistan.

These organisations have failed to even provide a unanimous list of missing or disappeared persons to the Pakistan government despite being asked numerous times, because there exists no such list.

What can Pakistan do?

Highlight the enforced disappearances of Kashmiri youth in IIOJ&K.

Collect data on Indian state sponsored terrorism in Pakistan; the case for state-sponsored terrorism be presented to the ICJ and the UNSC exposing involvement of Indian agencies in sponsoring and abetting terrorism in Pakistan.

Why is Pakistan so defensive when Modi shouts from the rampart of Red Fort that he is getting messages for Balochistan and Gilgit-Baltistan?

Give space to thousands of Indian dissidents and freedom fighters to at least express their views on Pakistani media?