Indian Missile Tests: Is it beginnig of yet another arms race in South Asia

Indian Missile Tests: Is it beginnig of yet another arms race in South Asia
 ISLAMABAD: Successive Missile Tests by India in the last week have once again altered the security scenario in the South Asia. Indian counter Ballistic Missile Tests along with the recent Submarine and land based ballistic missile tests have accelerated yet another debate of power imbalance in South Asia.

Due to the traditional military and security paradigm of South Asia any defence and security related event in either India or Pakistan is certainly going to have a reciprocal response from the other side.

National security circles in Pakistan have closely monitored the latest series of missiles tests. The Indian hegemonic ambitions in south Asia are well known to all however the question arises of the Indian intentions of military obsession in the region which is fuelling the arms race in the region.

Does India wants to bleed Pakistan by engaging in Arms race or India herself is bleeding itself by getting into arms race with much mightier China ?

Acquisition of Rafale fighter Jets, state of the art Aircraft Carrier, Submarines and the Russian made Air Defence Missiles are just few examples of the hysteric Indian Military ambitions.

Defence analysts and international affairs experts have expressed concern over nuclear and missile developments in South Asia.

They said that India had started arms race in the region and Pakistan had expressed concern at the 8th round of the Pakistan-U.S. Security, Strategic Stability, and Non-proliferation Working Group meeting in Islamabad.

Pakistan also expresses concerns on the growing conventional imbalance and reiterates its longstanding proposal for Strategic Restraint Regime (SRR) in South Asia.

Speaking in Radio Pakistan programme, Nuqta-e-Nazar Former Ambassador Dr. Fauzia Nasreen said that subjecting only Pakistan to disarmament regime was wrong and counterproductive.

She said  "Pakistan Pakistan is well aware of the changes that are coming on regional and international scene".

She said that Pakistan's foreign policy was based on peaceful relations with the neighboring countries, adding that Central Asian Republics also realized that they needed to strengthen their relations with Pakistan.

Security analyst Brig. (Retd.) Mehmood Shah said that India had no external pressure unlike Pakistan.

India has developed good relations with the US over the years and the main reason in cultivation of relations is the big Indian market for the US products.

Indian lobby was also very strong in the US,he said, adding that India had not accepted Pakistan since its inception.

Dr. Khurram Iqbal, security analyst said that attitude of India was the biggest stumbling block in regional peace as it had started arms race in the region.

The proposal given by Pakistan in 1998 for the reduction of nuclear weapons in sub-continent is feasible but India never gave a positive response to it. The second point was to solve all the disputes through negotiations.

This shows the positive efforts of Pakistan for the peace and stability of the region.

As far the issue of supply of F-16s is concerned, Pakistan needs to increase its negotiation power with Washington and consider other options of the buying of modern aircraft.

International Affairs Expert Dr. Zafar Nawaz Jaspal said that Pakistan presented a proposal for disarmament in 1998 which was an effective solution to control arms race in the subcontinent.

He said that Pakistan also developed tactical weapons to maintain balance of power in the region as India had far larger conventional forces against Pakistan.

Now, India has test launched submarine ballistic missiles.

Pakistan has to do advancement in weapon and nuclear technology to counter India's hegemony in the region.

The international community must play its positive and neutral role to maintain power in the region to control this arm race,he added.

Defence analyst Dr. Muhammad Khan said that the balance of power was vital for the peace and prosperity of the subcontinent.

But this goal cannot be achieved if international community, especially the US, continues to support India in arms race and weapon technologies,he said. Disarmament and peace of the region is also beneficial for international community but practically they keep on supporting India. The ties between US and India are based on the economic interests.

He said that on the other hand, Pakistan is an important ally of the US in the war on terror. India is playing dual role in the region. On one side, it is enhancing its ties with the US while on the other it is upgrading and increasing its capabilities against China and Pakistan,he said.

He said that America was using Pakistan in the war against terror, but whenever Pakistan needs American support, it failed to support Islamabad. The recent F-16 sale issue was an example of that,he added.

If the international community didnot pay any attention to the hysteric Indian ambitions of arms race in India, Pakistan would be bound to retaliate and reciprocate the same in order to ensure its National Security as was the case during the tit for tat nuclear tests in South Asia.