In March 1998, India broke 25 years silence when it detonated a series of nuclear devices in the Rajasthan desert. Having announced it possessed the requisite credentials for membership in the nuclear club in 1974, India quickly disavowed any desire to join, pledging not to develop its capability further. The Pokhran explosions revealed that promise to have been broken. The principal beneficiary of its breaking was a right-wing government seeking to shore up its shaky base with committment to the Hindu bomb.
About the Author
Aijaz Ahmad is a renowned cultural theorist who has taught in several western and Indian universities. A frequent contributor to "Frontline" magazine, he currently lives in New Delhi.
“At least let it be understood that India bears more ultimate responsibility for the Kashmir troubles than Pakistan, and that the confrontation between India and Pakistan would be a far less dangerous thing had it not been for the BJP’s communal thrust at home and its attempt to turn India into a nuclear great power abroad ... Nowhere else in the world, as the left-wing analyst and journalist Aijaz Ahmad says, have nuclear threats been so lightly thrown around.”—Guardian