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Monday, December 4, 2023

Will the India-Pakistan ties ever see a new dawn?


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It was in August 1947 when the Britain ended its colonial rule over the Indian subcontinent dividing it into two different nations- A secular India with a Hindu majority and the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. The partition sparked massive riots killing 10 lakh people while another 1.5 crores were coerced to leave their homes making the migration world’s one of the largest human migration.

Kashmir- the land of serene beauty with a Muslim majority but ruled by a Hindu maharaja Hari Singh was a piece of cake for which the two nations battled wars. The first war for the same was broke out in October 1947 which was then ended by an UN-brokered cease-fire that divided Kashmir into two.

The relations of India and Pakistan are ruined since then. When in January the United Nations Security Council called out a referendum where the decision lies with Kashmiris to decide their future; India and Pakistan agreed to the call.

Then, the Indus water treaty brokered by the World Bank was signed by the two nations in September 1960. The treaty governed six rivers dividing three to each.

A second war began in August 1965 over Kashmir which ended a month later the UN-mandated another ceasefire.

The Third war was fought in December 1971 resulting in the formation of Bangladesh.

In July 1972 the then Prime Ministers of both the nations Indira Gandhi and Zulfikar Ali Bhutto signed the Simla agreement.

With time, the then Indian Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee in February 1999 rides a bus to the Pakistani city named Lahore to meet the then Prime Minister of Pakistan Nawaz Sharif to sign a major Peace cord.

As the Pakistani forces have always played their part in snatching away the things and playing dirty games behind the back, in May 1999 a conflict erupted in Kargil as Pakistani forces and Kashmiri fighters occupied the Himalayan peaks. India in answer launched air and ground strikes.

The Vajpayee government tried to make peace talks then later in May 2001 and invited Pakistani President Parvez Musharraf for a meet in the Indian city Agra of U.P. The talks didn’t fetch any results.

As the bitter relations of India and Pakistan are world known, one can even surely notice the provocation being done by the Pakistan and its forces to make it bitter a bit each time.

A series of events than after can fetch you more understanding on the above-said line:

·      In an attack in October 2001 the legislature building was attacked by a group of insurgents in Kashmir which took the lives of 38 people.

·      Pakistani troops attacked the Indian Parliament in December 2001 killing 14 people. India blames it to be the gunmen of Pakistani militant groups Lashkar-e-Taiba and Jaish-e-Mohammad.

·      The Samjhauta express- a train running between India and Pakistan was bombed in Northern India in February 2007.

·      In November 2008, Taj Hotel in Mumbai was attacked by the Pakistani terror group Lashkar-e-Taiba which took the lives of 166.

·      In January 2016, six gunmen attacked an Indian air force base in the northern town of Pathankot. Several Indian soldiers gave up their lives in the battle that lasted for 6 days.

·      Followed by in September 2016 suspected terrorists sneaked into an Indian army base in Uri of Kashmir and killed 18 soldiers. Answering back the Indian army carried out a “surgical strike” 11 days later after the terror attack to destroy the terror launch pads across the Line of Control in Pakistan.

·      In the timeline, in February 2019 the terror groups of Pakistan attacked the convoy of Indian soldiers and 40 CRPF personnel were killed in the same.

The talks pact was held in January 2004 between Atal Bihari Bajpayee and Parvez Musharraf resulting in the launch of bilateral negotiations to settle outstanding issues.

India- Pakistan opened a trade routes in October 2008 across Kashmir for the first time in six decades.

Dr. Manmohan Singh the then Prime minister of India held talks with Pakistan in 2008 with its president General Parvez Musharraf over the disputed territory of Jammu and Kashmir. “Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s intent on building bridges was never in doubt,” said Wilson John, the vice president of the Observer Research Foundation in New Delhi. But the relations with Pakistan even then have never moved linearly.

India’s new Prime Minister Narendra Modi after sitting on the seat pushed himself hard to improve the relations between the two nations and invited PM of Pakistan Nawaz Sharif to his inauguration ceremony.

Soon after in Prime Minister Modi’s second tenure in 2019 August, a trade route a historic decision was taken by PM Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah to abrogate Article 370 of the Constitution in Kashmir, returning its statehood and making it free for all the citizens to visit and have their property in the Kashmir valley. The Pakistani government since then have baffled by the decision of India and has continually coerced to reverse the decision. Since then, the EXIM policy between India-Pakistan has been suspended.

As it is well known across the globe that the current Pakistan government has turned down the nation to a debtor of many countries and is run on debt fully. The probable reason why Imran Khan Government announced to open imports of cotton and sugar from India. Just a day after the announcement, the government said it was “deferring” the decision and linked it with the move on “normalization” by the New Delhi on Jammu and Kashmir. The condition being put by the presented day PM Imran khan is to restore Article 370 to restart the trade relations between India and Pakistan.

The U-turn was exasperating for both the Imran khan government and even more for the newly appointed Finance Minister Hammad Azhar as he held a press conference addressing the clearances by the ECC (Economic Coordination Council) for imports in India. He said that the move taken was the commercially based demand for Indian cotton and sugar as there is a very low yield of the products in the nation last year.

However, the announcement of the reversal of ECC’s decision was made public by Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi on Thursday through a recorded tape which heard that the matter needs “further debate”.

While New Delhi has cleared the air on its decision on Article 370 not to be reversed and that the statehood of Jammu and Kashmir will be restored at an ‘appropriate’ time in the future, even the External affairs ministry refused to comment on both the trade ties decision made earlier and on the latest deferring the same.

Two-nation putting the affairs and debates of India and Pakistan in the nutshell, it can be concluded that the ties of the nations will be worth looking at once the statehood of Jammu and Kashmir is restored.

[author title=”Shreya Gohel” image=”http://localhost/gc2/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/20210127_014031.jpg”]Intern, Goa Chronicle[/author]

DISCLAIMER: This article reflects author’s view point. Goa Chronicle may or may not subscribe to views of the author

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