Thursday marks the twelfth anniversary of the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks, also known as Indias 26/11. As is well known internationally, ten Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) terrorists from Pakistan reached Mumbai by sea, opened fire, took people hostages and killed 166 including 18 security personnel and some foreigners in the 60-hour siege.
Pakistan’s topmost investigating organization, the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) confessed that 11 terrorists involved in the 26/11 Mumbai attacks were Pakistani nationals. Pakistan, India’s western neighbor, has become a center for Islamic militants who it uses as a State policy against India and also against Afghanistan.
On international and multilateral fora, Pakistan has been proven to have close connections with terror groups several times. The most prominent was when US forces captured Osama bin Laden from his hideout in Pakistan, where he had been kept in a safehouse by the Pakistani Army and intelligence.
It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that India has been one of the biggest victims of Radical Islam since its Independence in 1947. The presence Pakistan a “rogue State” whose existence came into being on the basis of religion has made India extremely vulnerable to extremism. Although India has the second-largest population of Muslims in the world, it has enjoyed harmonious relations between the majority Hindus and minority Muslims due the country’s focus on secularism and not using religion as State policy. Credit also goes to the Muslims of India, a majority of who practice the Sufi version of lslam.
Radical Islam in Pakistan, along with its corresponding terror networks, collects fund in the name of Islam and use the donations for violent activities. Harkat-ul-Mujahedeen and Jammat-ul-Furqan, two banned militant outfits linked to the TTP and al Qaeda, have established themselves as charities. These organizations take advantage of the generosity of Pakistani Muslims, who annually contribute billions of rupees as part of zakat and fitra, a gift of food or money. These funds are utilized for dawa (preaching), and jihad, including recruitment and training, and the procurement of equipment and weapons. However, radical Islam has gained currency and popularity in India among a section of Indian Muslims due to the influence of Pakistan and presence of several madarsas that propagate the Wahabi version of lslam.
Radical Islam as an ideology poses danger to not one or two countries but an entire civilization and is also considered a threat to liberal democratic values that several states have adopted over a period of time. This ideology believes in an universal utopian totalitarian state called ummah where Muslims would rule and those belonging to other faiths would either be annihilated or be made to live as second class citizens in their so-called utopian state.
The problem is global in nature, as several terror organisations believe in this version of lslam. The difference lies in the degree and not the version be it ISIS, Al Qaeda, Al Shabab, JeM, LeL or SIMI. Many of these organisations are actively supported by the Pakistani establishment to wage a proxy war against India, examples of which include the 2001 Parliament attack, Akshardham temple Attack, Attack on J&K assembly, the 26/11 Mumbai attacls, blasts in Delhi, Varanasi and Rampur and many other incidents of violence.
Pakistan is a failed state not just because it is a hub of terrorism but has also failed to provide basic economic and social justice to its citizens. The Pakistani Army and it’s spy agency ISI has been using these jihadi groups to serve their vested interests. The Pakistani Army, a giant financial corporation and terror organizer, is all-powerful while the mullahs have madrassas and meticulously radicalize impoverished Pakistani youth.
To conclude, terrorism is the biggest threat for human civilization where the life of innocent people is taken in the name of jihad.
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