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T H E I N F O R M A L WAR

Soon after, political violence broke out, culminating in the murder of a rulingp
arty
affiliated politician Mohiuddin Bandey in a clash with National Conference
cadre at Hazratbal. In April 1958, Sheikh Abdullah was again detained. This time
the charges were deadly serious: if India s intelligence establishment had indeed
been engaged in laying a trap, the prey had bitten.
Unending war
For at least one key military official in Pakistan, the war of 1947 had never
ended. Soon after the end of the war, Major-General Akbar Khan wrote a tract
demanding armed assistance for a rebellion in Jammu and Kashmir. In essence,
he argued that even if such assistance was to lead to war, it would be so much
the better as this would tend to threaten the existing international peace and
only then would there be reason for the United Nations again to take note of
the [Kashmir] problem .82 Khan s tract, of which 5,000 copies were published,
excited the interest of India s politicians and press.
Pakistan s politicians were also listening. Khan was now asked to brief
Pakistan s then President, Iskandar Mirza, on just how a renewed military enterpri
se
to take Jammu and Kashmir might be run. Khan laid out plans for a covert
war, involving just 500 men trained in guerilla warfare and sabotage.
My emphasis was on the use of lesser and lesser numbers, so that a pair
of men would have at least a clear mile to operate in. Thus, they would
be almost impossible to detect and they would have no difficulty in going
across the cease-fire line which was open in so many places to such
an extent that unauthorized traffic of men and animals was constantly
going on across it regularly. They would have to be preferably locals,
or at least in local clothes, armed only with some dynamite for blowing
up bridges and pliers for wire cutting. For their own protection each
could have a knife or a small local made pistol. They would not need to
fight against police or troops. Their target would be unguarded bridges,
isolated wires and unprotected transport.83
Mirza, Khan has recorded, also discussed plans to defend Lahore, in case such
a sub-conventional operation provoked a full-scale Indian military response.
President Mirza, according to the Major-General, said that having satisfied
himself about the security of Lahore, he had advised General Ayub Khan to
proceed with that scheme for occupied Kashmir .84 Major-General Khan was
never told precisely what Ayub Khan had been tasked to do, but does record that
in those very days, some small explosions took place in occupied Kashmir .85
Subsequently, Malik Feroze Khan Noon, soon after taking charge as Pakistan s
Prime Minister in 1957, whispered in Major-General Khan s ear, we have started
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