In the most recent development with regards to the Pathankot attacks, Pakistan has reportedly arrested Jaish-e-Mohammad chief Maulana Masood Azhar, his brother and several others of the same organisation who are said to be associated with the attacks in Pathankot. This detention and the eventual sealing of their office happened after India demanded constructive action ahead of the Foreign Secretary-level talks. However many experts believe that this is just a superficial move and the core of the matter.
Here is why they are concerned and quiet rightly so. Maulana Masood Azhar is no stranger to such detention after a major attack. Even in 2011, when India readied troops at the border after the ghastly Parliament Attacks, he was arrested. What happened then? Well, nothing actually! He was not charged with any crime, treated with great respect and eventually released after one year. He again went underground after the Mumbai attacks and resurfaced in 2014 with a renewed call for Jihad against India.
Afterall one must not forget that he is the same guy who was released in exchange of the passengers of the ill-fated Indian Airlines flight in 2000. He headed straight to Pakistan from Kandahar and was literally given a hero’s welcome. The Jaish-e-Mohammed was eventually set up by him and even engaged in huge recruiting drive for the next several years and all with the blessings of the Pakistani Government.
Though the talks between Indian Pakistani foreign secretaries would proceed more under global pressure, India needs to be prepared for the proxy wear to continue and prepare for further attacks. Perhaps what needs to be also paid attention to the fact that the Pakistan Government machinery might be now more careful about covering the tracks, so that it becomes at least a little more difficult to link it back to them. It would work in India’s favour therefore to be on the alert and strengthen its strategic positioning significantly to protect the borders better.