Speeches in Parliament Vol. (IV)-61

Shri Bhupesh Gupta : They themselves admit it. Last year Prime Minister Bhutto said it.

Shri Y B. Chavan : That is right. My point is that there was no question of any sense of insecurity in Pakistan. If we apply objective criteria to this matter, it is not a fact.

He has made a statement that we are spending about a billion dollars a year on arms purchase. Well, certainly as a matter of fundamental policy, we are trying to build our own defence industries and our defence strength in our country. These is nothing wrong about it. This is one thing. Then if we compare the budgets, experts like Mr. Subramanian Swamy will vouchafe what I am saying, the defence expenditure is normally taken either in forms of percentage of the GNP or in terms of percentage of the annual budget. If you see this year’s annual budget - I have casually seen it, unfortunately, I have not gone deep  into it - I think our defence expenditure is about 20 to 21 percent, may be 21 to 22 per cent. And in terms of GNP, I am sure it is not more than 4 per cent.

Shri Subramanian Swamy : The correct figure is 3 per cent. Why say 3 to 4 percent ?

Shri Y. B. Chavan : All right, 3 per cent. I am prepared in this matter to be a little more liberal in order to be a little more convincing to them. If we compare the figure of Pakistan’s expenditure in terms of their annual budget, their defence expenditure is 56 per cent of the budget, and in terms of GNP, it comes to about 9 per cent.

Shri Bhupesh Gupta : Ten per cent.

Shri Y B. Chavan : Here I am prepared to come down. After seeing these things, to say that there is a sense of insecurity in Pakistan is something very irrational; it is an irrational idea that has been planted in the mind of Pakistan which has a tradition of rather inflated belligerence. Nevertheless that is very harmful to Pakistan. As we would like to educate Americans that their policy is wrong, we would certainly like to educate Pakistan leadership, Pakistan statesmen, Pakistan Government and, if we can, the Pakistan people also that this method is the method which takes them to run...

Shri Bhupesh Gupta : I think we better say “We would like Pakistan leadership to be educated” rather than “we would like to educate them.”

Shri Y. B. Chavan : So, some of these arguments which have been made on behalf of the American administration are arguments which are not acceptable to us at all. They are not acceptable, not because we do not like them, but because they do not stand any objective scrutiny, any objective criteria. Therefore, their policy is basically wrong. If they want peace in the world, which they claim they want - they say “we want peace in the sub-continent and we want to help it” - then this is not the policy to do that. Either you are deceiving yourselves or the other alternative is, you are trying to deceive us. It is either of the two; I do not want to make any charge. But logically there seems to be no third alternative in this matter. I am saying this frankly because I am not criticising for criticism’s sake. I am making this frank assessment in order to build mature relationship because mature relationship means frank assessment of each other. This is how I am trying to put it before the House.