Pakistan in perpetual tension

From The Hindu:

JeffChristophe Jaffrelot is a Senior Research Fellow at CERI-Sciences Po/CNRS, Paris, Visiting Professor at the King's India Institute (London) and Global Scholar at Princeton University. In this exclusive interview with The Hindu’s Vaiju Naravane he discusses his new book to be published in India under the title The Pakistan Paradox.

In what sense is your book, published in France this week by Fayard under the title Le Syndrome Pakistanais, an essay or a pamphlet, and what is the thesis or the central point of the book?

The book argues that Pakistan is facing three contradictions since 1947 — and even, sometimes, since its very project emerged during the Raj. Primarily, there is the tension between a unitary notion of the Muslim nation state that is Pakistan and the diversity of the country in ethno-linguistic terms. This tension was there before Partition and it has remained after Partition with at least three provinces that never reconciled themselves fully with the Pakistani project: Bengal — Bengalis went in 1971, and the Baluchistan, which has been repeatedly on the warpath vis-à-vis the centre, and the Pashtuns, who have a very peculiar trajectory. There's been a demand for Pashtunistan, even a kind of irredentism with the Afghan Pashtuns for years, but the Pashtun trajectory has been more complicated since sections of the Pashtun elite — especially among the military — have rallied around the Pakistani project.

More here.