(Copyright 2001. The Tattoo. All Rights Reserved.)

The Tattoo

--- Making a Permanent Impression Since 1994 ---

Dec. 31, 2001

India fumes and war clouds gather

By Syed A. Huda

By Syed A. Huda

KARACHI , PAKISTAN – There is a cloud of uncertainty over everyone’s heads here .  

Despite watching the news about the latest tension between India and Pakistan , many people say they don’t know what will happen.  

“Only God knows what’s going on,” said Suraiya Huda.  

And that’s true.

Indian Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee now says that there is a very little chance of a war erupting, but earlier he said that no dialogue would take place between the two countries.

People are confused over the sudden change in plans.

Young people in Karachi have their own views regarding the bitter situation.

For instance, a medical school student, Samra Ahmad, said, “The less fortunate who are trying to keep the roofs over their heads in one piece now have to worry about whether they’ll have a roof there at all.”

Others hold similar strong opinions, but have different reasons.

The Pakistani Government has shut down all Indian channels shown in Pakistan – and because many people watch Indian channels, young Pakistanis are in frenzy.

As a college student Najia Khan said, “I miss Roswell .” The UPN science fiction show Roswell is shown on Indian television.

“I think India ’s crazy,” Khan said. “We want peace and we’re saying that again and again and again.”

Fifteen-year-old Zaid Laghari said that by shutting down the television channels, Pakistan “showed irritation to the Indian Government”

“It has reached quite a climax,” Laghari said. “It’s a total mess!”

He said he believed – as many people may also think – that launching a war over the dozen people who died in the Dec. 13 suicide attack aimed at the Indian Parliament is absurd.

Yes, India ’s fuming. First, it was Pakistan saying they wanted to have Kashmir . Then, it was Pakistan preventing the annulment of the Indus Water Treaty. And now this latest crisis.

Some say that there’s a 5 percent chance of a war occurring.

Even though it’s a small possibility, it’s still there, hence the fear and the anger.

If, God forbid, there is a war, hopefully it won’t be like the 1972 one, where a portion of Pakistan was sliced away.

With all the tension here, the cloud of uncertainty is getting blacker than ever.

Huda, who joined The Tattoo in Dec. 2001, lives in Karachi .

Want more information on the unfolding events in India and Pakistan?

Check out The Times of India at www.timesofindia.com

or Dawn, an English language Pakistani newspaper, at www.dawn.com

To understand some of India's thinking, see this Tattoo story:

India reacts to Sept. 11 with horror, hope


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