Indian plot to detach East Pakistan

 Asif Haroon Rajabangladesh_loc_1996_map(riverse

From the book by Basant Chaterjee (Inside Bangladesh Today) we now know that Pundit Nehru had been scheming since August 1947 to reclaim East Bengal and to make it an integral part of Indian Union. Current Bangladesh PM and daughter of late Mujib, Sheikh Hasina Wajid claimed, as reported on 8 March 2010, that Mujib planned separation from Pakistan in 1969 in London. Somehow she didn’t make any mention of her father’s visit to Agartala in November 3, 1963. Although Dr Kalidas Baidya in his book ‘Ontoraler Sheikh Mujib’, Kolkata, 2005 spelled out the details of Mujib’s connections with the Indian policy makers as early as 1950s, it is surprising none else in Bangladesh has spoken about this critical visit where foundations of the secession plan were laid.

  On 22 February 2011, on the anniversary of the withdrawal of Agartala conspiracy case, a surviving conspirator and Deputy Speaker of the Bangladesh Parliament Colonel Shawkat Ali confessed to the Bangladesh Parliament at a point of order that the charges read out to them were accurate, stating that they had formed a Shangram Parishad under Sheikh Mujib for the secession of East Pakistan. He was among the 35 accused in the case.

Indian writer B Raman in his book ‘Role of RAW in Liberation of Bangladesh’ disclosed that the role of RAW was five-fold: First, provide intelligence to India’s policy-makers and its armed forces. Second, train Bengali “freedom fighters” in clandestine training camps, then to the network with Bengali public servants from the East Pakistan posted in the West Pakistan and in Pakistan’s diplomatic missions abroad. Third, persuade them to cooperate with freedom-fighters and to help in the freedom struggle by providing intelligence. Fourth, mount a special operation in Chittagong Hill Tracks against sanctuaries and training camps of Naga and Mizo hostiles. Fifth, organize a psychological warfare campaign against Pakistani rulers by disseminating reports about massacres of Bengalis in East Pakistan and exodus of refugees.

He writes that involvement of RAW was multi-pronged and that was the reason that Indira Gandhi in the wake of widespread disturbances in East Pakistan in early 1971 decided to assist the Bengali-speaking people of East Pakistan in their efforts to separate from Pakistan and achieve an independent state to be called Bangladesh.

Noted Indian writer Dr Sarmila Bose writes in her book that the courageous Pakistan Army stood on the eastern front. She writes that there is much for Pakistan to come to terms with what happened in 1971. But the answers don’t lie in unthinking vilification of the fighting men who performed so well in the war against such heavy odds in the defence of national policy. Rather, in failing to honour them, the nation dishonors itself.

Indian writer Maj Gen (retired) D K Palit writes in his book “The lightning Campaign”, that one general misconception must be cleared from the beginning. There has been much speculation as to why Pakistan Army collapsed in Bangladesh: Whereas the fact is that there was nothing like general collapse. In many places as at Hilli, Jamalpur, Khulna and other strongholds, the enemy (Pakistan) put bitter resistance often having to be physically destroyed before the post could be captured to be sure, in certain cases such as Jessore and Mymensingh the enemy withdrew from their defences before the main assault could be put in, but by and large they fought hard. There were many defended towns still holding out when the surrender was announced as at Mainamati (Comilla), Khulna, Dinajpur, Saidpur and portion of Sylhet.”

Recent revelations made by one Tibetan Brigadier Ratuk are startling. He says that he had a secret guerrilla force operation in Tibet, which was under Indian Army command and Indian Gen Pabun was their commander. He says that about 2000 Bengalis were brought into the camp and he was told that these were men of Mukti Bahini and would support his force. He adds, when Tibetan militants entered East Bengal, they learned that Bengali traitors were not trained enough to fight against Pak Army, but could be of use as guides only because Tibetan guerrillas were not conversant with terrain and installations of Pakistan Army.

Brig Ratuk further claims that whereas his Tibetan guerrillas waged war against Pakistan disguised as Mukti Bahini, the world was deceived that Mukti Bahini was fighting for freedom against Pakistan. He says that this was blatant lie since the actual war was fought by his men. Indian Army was brought in when Indians were assured that Pakistan Army had been badly hurt and was isolated on the international level through successful propaganda on war crimes committed by Pak Army. He says that Indian media underplayed Pak Army’s victories and extolled Mukti Bahini acts most of which were imaginary. Likewise, stories of rapes and wanton killings by Pakistani soldiers were mostly concocted.    The confession of Brig Ratuk should be sufficient to open our eyes that East Pakistan was separated through a big conspiracy. It is however most unfortunate that our pro-Indian intellectuals and Aman Ki Asha and SAFMA brand journalists continue to beat their old trumpets that Pakistan Army gang raped Bengali women, and was involved in heinous crime of genocide. They stick to their stance even after unearthing of reality of Mukti Bahini and publication of so many books written by Bangladesh writers.

They need to answer as to why Pak Army fighting the foreign aided terrorists in Tribal Areas for a decade and carrying out successful operations is not indulging in its old habit of rapes? In spite of so many incidents of slaughter of kidnapped soldiers by militants and sustaining such large casualties, why not a single incident of rape or intentional killings of innocents have occurred?   Likewise, the Army was employed in Balochistan to counter insurgency from 2004 to 2007 and thereon the Frontier Corps took on the security duties. No rape case has been reported. The only case that was drummed up was of Dr. Shazia employed in a hospital in Sui, allegedly raped by an Army Captain. But when the Army investigations started, all those (including Shazia) who wrote this propaganda story to defame Pakistan Army fled to London so that actual facts could not be revealed through investigations.

In 1971, secular Bengali intellectuals and journalists had played into the hands of Indians and now our liberal and secular intellectuals and journalists are playing the tutored theme of missing persons to defame Pak security forces and are smoke-screening Indian wickedness and projecting its soft face. They still are not prepared to believe that Mukti Bahini were involved in mass killings of tens of thousands of unarmed pro-Pakistan Bengalis, Biharis and West Pakistanis and raping of West Pakistani girls from 1-25 March 1971 and subsequently in November-December 1971.

Many in Pakistan still myopically consider that Sheikh Mujib was and still is hero of Bangladeshis, forgetting that Mujib and his family comprising 23 persons were murdered by soldiers of Bangladesh Army, not by one or two soldiers but by the whole Regiment and their bodies dumped in an unmarked mass grave.

The band of pro-Indian lovers led by Asma Jahangir are least concerned about the atrocities perpetrated by demonic Indian forces in occupied Kashmir against hapless Kashmiris and India’s uncompromising attitude over unresolved disputes of Kashmir, Siachin, Sir Creek and water and its involvement in FATA, Balochistan and Karachi. They however derive pleasure in demonizing Pak Army for uncommitted sins. Unlike their negative stance, there is greater awareness among the people of Bangladesh including their writers. They have seen the real face of India and realize that it was a folly on part of Mujib and his cohorts to trust India and seek its assistance to get independence.

The writer is a retired Brig and a defence analyst. Email:

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