Pulwama: Dulat advocate “diplomacy” should be pursued “aggressively”

NEW DELHI: Amarjit Singh Dulat, former research and Analysis Wing (R&AW) chief on Sunday advocated “diplomacy” should be pursued “aggressively” instead of “coercive action” to send message to Pakistan.

“Diplomatic road is very important. Americans have already supported us (India). I think the diplomatic line is the right line which was used successfully after 1999 (Kargil) and 2001 (Parliament attack). It should be pursued aggressively to get across a message to Pakistan that this sort of thing (Pulwama or Pathankot attacks) cannot continue,” he told in an interview to The Indian Express.

In his conversation, the former spymaster, who served in Kashmir as the Joint Director of the Intelligence Bureau from 1988 to 1990, said he has always advocated dialogue. But may be branded as “anti-national” if he talks about dialogue at this moment (Pulwama attack) of grief.

As many as 40 CRPF personnel were blown up in an instant in Awantipora area on February 14 after their convoy was targeted by a JeM suicide bomber on the Jammu-Srinagar highway in Pulwama.

Dulat served as chief of India’s Research and Analysis Wing (RAW), the country’s external intelligence agency, from 1999 to 2000 and was a close aide of then Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee on Kashmir affairs from 2001 to 2004.

The former IPS officer has participated in a somewhat unique book of dialogues, “The Spy Chronicles – RAW ISI And The Illusion Of Peace” with his once rival, former Pakistani spy chief Lt. Gen. Asad Durrani (retd).

The book throws light on Kashmir, and a missed opportunity for peace; Hafiz Saeed and 26/11; Kulbhushan Jadhav; surgical strikes; the deal for Osama bin Laden; how the US and Russia feature in the India-Pakistan relationship; and how terror undermines the two countries’ attempts at talks.

Dulat, who has previously authored “Kashmir: The Vajpayee Years”, said “not talking to Pakistan is a sort of a handicap” more so at a time when geo-political landscape was witnessing a new churn.

With agency inputs