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After Uri Attack, What India Can Do About Pakistan Instead Of Waging War

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By Aishik Purkait:

On September 18, the Indian Army’s base in Uri, Jammu and Kashmir, was attacked by militants, resulting in the death of 17 soldiers of the infantry battalion in the rear office of the army’s base in Baramulla district. The attack was carried out in the early hours of Sunday, hence taking the army by surprise. The counter operations resulted in the death of all four terrorists involved in the attacks.

As per top military and government sources, it is considered to be orchestrated by Pakistan.

The attack has only added fuel to the fire and has enraged Indians. Since the attacks, hyper-enraged anchors on television have already waged war on Pakistan. Social media has been abuzz with people taking out their wrath on Pakistan and calling on the Indian Army to engage in a military conflict. But at this point, will waging a war on Pakistan be helpful to India and its interests? Or should India isolate Pakistan on the world stage so that Pakistan learns its lessons and heeds to India’s demands?

India should first isolate Pakistan on the economic front. The trade estimate between the countries was $2.4 billion in 2013. India, being one of the biggest economies in the South Asian region, holds a key economic position.

Pakistan’s economic progress does need India’s support if they want to pave way for South Asian regional economic cooperation. Pakistan is also in desperate need of larger markets for export and with India closing its doors to Pakistan, it will hit the latter’s potential industrial hubs in Baluchistan, Karachi, Multan, Lahore, Gujrat, Gujranwala, Sialkot, Peshawar and other areas.

India conferred the title of Most Favoured Nation (MFN) to Pakistan in 1996. This essentially means that restrictions on imports on Pakistan was removed and India had to impose the same tariff rates as it does to other countries. The ideal thing for India to do at this situation would be to remove this title. This would ensure that Pakistan is cornered in the South-Eastern region. This should be coupled with India restricting imports from Pakistan in the sectors of textile, jewellery, precious metals and base metals. This will hit their exports.

India should also consider Rajya Sabha MP Rajeev Chandrasekhar’s proposed resolution and bill to declare Pakistan a terrorist state. This must be passed in the Winter session.

“Earlier, Indian foreign policy towards Pakistan was characterised with strategic restraint. Now the situation has come where India has to act in terms of completely isolating Pakistan from associations like SAARC and consider revoking the treaty of water between India and Pakistan. However, the latter may negatively affect India’s credibility on international platforms because it is not a bilateral treaty, instead, it is an international treaty” said Dr. Chaitanya Pradeep, a professor of Political Science in Christ University, Bengaluru.

India should also push to get the bill, which was introduced by two US lawmakers in the United States to designate Pakistan as a state sponsor of terrorism, passed in the US parliament.

Moreover, India should also ask the G4 nations (Brazil, Germany, India and Japan) to stop all economic engagements with Pakistan and resort from engaging in any diplomatic talks be it Track 1 or Track 2.

India should also force a resolution declaring Pakistan a terrorist state in the Security Council. However, China will stop the resolution from being passed. The threat of China comes along with Pakistan.

PM Modi should also persuade the United States to discontinue the aid it gives to Pakistan. Stopping US aid will come as a huge blow to the already disturbed Nawaz Sharif government.

”At present, the absence of a central global body dedicated to terrorist prevention and response resulted in the UN inability to instantly initiate counter-terrorism. The landscape for counter-terrorism activity thus lacks coherence. It is multi-layered, ranging from legally binding instruments and strategic guidelines, to multilateral institutions and regional frameworks” said Dr Pradeep.

India can seek help from both American forces and NATO forces stationed in Afghanistan to increase their military activities and thus build pressure on Pakistan.

Moreover, India must engage in diplomatic talks with far-eastern nations to declare Pakistan a terrorist state and also cut off all economic and diplomatic ties with Pakistan. India should push for all major countries to call for sanctions on Pakistan.

However, calling for military engagement at this stage, might not be helpful for India.

After the Indo-Pak war in 1971, India had to face an economic crisis. A large part of our budget was allotted for defence purposes which resulted in slow growth in other key sectors. This was coupled with the war against China in 1962 which took a huge toll on the Indian exchequer. India had to suffer from drought and famine in a bid to fulfill the needs of the army.

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An ambassador and trained facilitator under Eco Femme (a social enterprise working towards menstrual health in south India), Sanjina is also an active member of the MHM Collective- India and Menstrual Health Alliance- India. She has conducted Menstrual Health sessions in multiple government schools adopted by Rotary District 3240 as part of their WinS project in rural Bengal. She has also delivered training of trainers on SRHR, gender, sexuality and Menstruation for Tomorrow’s Foundation, Vikramshila Education Resource Society, Nirdhan trust and Micro Finance, Tollygunj Women In Need, Paint It Red in Kolkata.

Now as an MH Fellow with YKA, she’s expanding her impressive scope of work further by launching a campaign to facilitate the process of ensuring better menstrual health and SRH services for women residing in correctional homes in West Bengal. The campaign will entail an independent study to take stalk of the present conditions of MHM in correctional homes across the state and use its findings to build public support and political will to take the necessary action.

Saurabh has been associated with YKA as a user and has consistently been writing on the issue MHM and its intersectionality with other issues in the society. Now as an MHM Fellow with YKA, he’s launched the Right to Period campaign, which aims to ensure proper execution of MHM guidelines in Delhi’s schools.

The long-term aim of the campaign is to develop an open culture where menstruation is not treated as a taboo. The campaign also seeks to hold the schools accountable for their responsibilities as an important component in the implementation of MHM policies by making adequate sanitation infrastructure and knowledge of MHM available in school premises.

Read more about his campaign.

Harshita is a psychologist and works to support people with mental health issues, particularly adolescents who are survivors of violence. Associated with the Azadi Foundation in UP, Harshita became an MHM Fellow with YKA, with the aim of promoting better menstrual health.

Her campaign #MeriMarzi aims to promote menstrual health and wellness, hygiene and facilities for female sex workers in UP. She says, “Knowledge about natural body processes is a very basic human right. And for individuals whose occupation is providing sexual services, it becomes even more important.”

Meri Marzi aims to ensure sensitised, non-discriminatory health workers for the needs of female sex workers in the Suraksha Clinics under the UPSACS (Uttar Pradesh State AIDS Control Society) program by creating more dialogues and garnering public support for the cause of sex workers’ menstrual rights. The campaign will also ensure interventions with sex workers to clear misconceptions around overall hygiene management to ensure that results flow both ways.

Read more about her campaign.

MH Fellow Sabna comes with significant experience working with a range of development issues. A co-founder of Project Sakhi Saheli, which aims to combat period poverty and break menstrual taboos, Sabna has, in the past, worked on the issue of menstruation in urban slums of Delhi with women and adolescent girls. She and her team also released MenstraBook, with menstrastories and organised Menstra Tlk in the Delhi School of Social Work to create more conversations on menstruation.

With YKA MHM Fellow Vineet, Sabna launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society. As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Read more about her campaign. 

A student from Delhi School of Social work, Vineet is a part of Project Sakhi Saheli, an initiative by the students of Delhi school of Social Work to create awareness on Menstrual Health and combat Period Poverty. Along with MHM Action Fellow Sabna, Vineet launched Menstratalk, a campaign that aims to put an end to period poverty and smash menstrual taboos in society.

As a start, the campaign aims to begin conversations on menstrual health with five hundred adolescents and youth in Delhi through offline platforms, and through this community mobilise support to create Period Friendly Institutions out of educational institutes in the city.

Find out more about the campaign here.

A native of Bhagalpur district – Bihar, Shalini Jha believes in equal rights for all genders and wants to work for a gender-equal and just society. In the past she’s had a year-long association as a community leader with Haiyya: Organise for Action’s Health Over Stigma campaign. She’s pursuing a Master’s in Literature with Ambedkar University, Delhi and as an MHM Fellow with YKA, recently launched ‘Project अल्हड़ (Alharh)’.

She says, “Bihar is ranked the lowest in India’s SDG Index 2019 for India. Hygienic and comfortable menstruation is a basic human right and sustainable development cannot be ensured if menstruators are deprived of their basic rights.” Project अल्हड़ (Alharh) aims to create a robust sensitised community in Bhagalpur to collectively spread awareness, break the taboo, debunk myths and initiate fearless conversations around menstruation. The campaign aims to reach at least 6000 adolescent girls from government and private schools in Baghalpur district in 2020.

Read more about the campaign here.

A psychologist and co-founder of a mental health NGO called Customize Cognition, Ritika forayed into the space of menstrual health and hygiene, sexual and reproductive healthcare and rights and gender equality as an MHM Fellow with YKA. She says, “The experience of working on MHM/SRHR and gender equality has been an enriching and eye-opening experience. I have learned what’s beneath the surface of the issue, be it awareness, lack of resources or disregard for trans men, who also menstruate.”

The Transmen-ses campaign aims to tackle the issue of silence and disregard for trans men’s menstruation needs, by mobilising gender sensitive health professionals and gender neutral restrooms in Lucknow.

Read more about the campaign here.

A Computer Science engineer by education, Nitisha started her career in the corporate sector, before realising she wanted to work in the development and social justice space. Since then, she has worked with Teach For India and Care India and is from the founding batch of Indian School of Development Management (ISDM), a one of its kind organisation creating leaders for the development sector through its experiential learning post graduate program.

As a Youth Ki Awaaz Menstrual Health Fellow, Nitisha has started Let’s Talk Period, a campaign to mobilise young people to switch to sustainable period products. She says, “80 lakh women in Delhi use non-biodegradable sanitary products, generate 3000 tonnes of menstrual waste, that takes 500-800 years to decompose; which in turn contributes to the health issues of all menstruators, increased burden of waste management on the city and harmful living environment for all citizens.

Let’s Talk Period aims to change this by

Find out more about her campaign here.

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A former Assistant Secretary with the Ministry of Women and Child Development in West Bengal for three months, Lakshmi Bhavya has been championing the cause of menstrual hygiene in her district. By associating herself with the Lalana Campaign, a holistic menstrual hygiene awareness campaign which is conducted by the Anahat NGO, Lakshmi has been slowly breaking taboos when it comes to periods and menstrual hygiene.

A Gender Rights Activist working with the tribal and marginalized communities in india, Srilekha is a PhD scholar working on understanding body and sexuality among tribal girls, to fill the gaps in research around indigenous women and their stories. Srilekha has worked extensively at the grassroots level with community based organisations, through several advocacy initiatives around Gender, Mental Health, Menstrual Hygiene and Sexual and Reproductive Health Rights (SRHR) for the indigenous in Jharkhand, over the last 6 years.

Srilekha has also contributed to sustainable livelihood projects and legal aid programs for survivors of sex trafficking. She has been conducting research based programs on maternal health, mental health, gender based violence, sex and sexuality. Her interest lies in conducting workshops for young people on life skills, feminism, gender and sexuality, trauma, resilience and interpersonal relationships.

A Guwahati-based college student pursuing her Masters in Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Bidisha started the #BleedwithDignity campaign on the technology platform, demanding that the Government of Assam install
biodegradable sanitary pad vending machines in all government schools across the state. Her petition on has already gathered support from over 90000 people and continues to grow.

Bidisha was selected in’s flagship program ‘She Creates Change’ having run successful online advocacy
campaigns, which were widely recognised. Through the #BleedwithDignity campaign; she organised and celebrated World Menstrual Hygiene Day, 2019 in Guwahati, Assam by hosting a wall mural by collaborating with local organisations. The initiative was widely covered by national and local media, and the mural was later inaugurated by the event’s chief guest Commissioner of Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) Debeswar Malakar, IAS.

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