At a time when parts of the country are on the boil over the contentious Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), the Army Chief’s warning that the situation along the line of control can escalate any time and the Indian Army is always ready for an “escalatory matrix” is not only alarmist but unwise too. While it is true that ceasefire violations by Pakistan have witnessed a spurt since the abrogation of Article 370 in August, “escalatory matrix” is not an option particularly when our economy seems headed for the ICU, as opined by Arvind Subramanian, former chief economic advisor.
The Army Chief needs to be more circumspect in his public utterances and consider their likely political ramifications. With a large number of leaders, including three former chief ministers, still under detention in Kashmir despite Union home minister’s claim of normalcy there, the Army Chief’s warning of a possible escalation of tensions along the LoC could well be used by the Centre as a ground to maintain the status quo in the valley. That would be unfortunate.
S K Choudhury, Bengaluru
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