Fact and fiction about India-Pak war

deepak pace

New Delhi: Relations between India and Pakistan have been in the dumps since terrorists attacked Mumbai a month ago, killing 179 people and injuring hundreds more.

In the heated aftermath, after the attackers were traced to Pakistan by Indian security agencies, there were talks of troop movement, surgical air-strike and even war being considered by India.

But these seem all loose talk. A war between the two neighbours is highly improbable.

The two governments have repeatedly said they are not considering war. External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee has said India is keeping all options open and Pakistani leaders have said their military is capable of defending the country: comments which have been misinterpreted.

Rumour: Pakistan is building up troops along the Line of Control.

Fact: India has not observed any additional troop deployment. But yes there has been increased movement by the Pakistan Army and Rangers, a paramilitary force, deployed in their respective areas of responsibility.

Rumour: Pakistan has moved troops away from its Western border with Afghanistan to the East to threaten India.

Fact: No movement of Pakistani troops away from Afghanistan border other than routine.

Rumour: India is discreetly mobilising troops on the border with Pakistan.

Fact: Indian Army stays in cantonments and no mobilisation of troops is taking place.

Rumour: The Indian Army has replaced the Border Security Force along borders.

Fact: The Border Security Force is still guarding the borders.

Rumour: India’s service chiefs have been asked not to undertake foreign tours.

Fact: No such instruction by Government to chiefs.

Rumour: 'Unprecedented' talks were held between the Directors General of Military Operations of India and Pakistan on Saturday to defuse tension.

Fact: India denies such a conversation took place.