By the Editor: Siddharth Sehgal
It’s all fun and games until someone gets hurt, this is how we can describe our relationship with Pakistan. Friendship if not love is in the air. Currently we are using the terms like neighbour and padosi instead of enemy. So as citizens what should we make of this growing warmth between India and Pakistan or should we say between the leadership of the two countries. Not much to be honest, it’s a wait and watch game, so right now we should watch.
Narendra Modi’s sudden detour on his way back home is a sort of surprise for many. Its not as if you are dropping by to see a relative, its our head of state going for a quick visit to a country with whom we never had amicable relations. Even the staunchest of conservatives and most liberal of liberals were astonished by Narendra Modi’s decision to visit Pakistan. This historic visit in a decade happened unannounced but its reverberations will be long felt in geo political dynamics of South East Asia.
Atal Bihari Vajpayee was “Bhishm Pitamaha” of modern Indian politics. He wanted to leave behind a legacy of peace for his countrymen. He may have seen Pakistan’s assurances to be genuine but when Pervez Musharraf took reigns of Pakistan in a hostile takeover, all the promises of peace and cooperation turned out to be empty. What would come out of all the talks, bilateral and diplomatic meetings if Pakistan continues to provide patronage to people like Hafiz Saeed, Ilyas Kashmiri and Dawood Ibrahim. Mumbai attacks on 26/11 have been etched as a dark spot in Indians memory; no one wants those ugly chapters of history to play itself again. This visit will be a gaffe or a gamble that paid off will be revealed by time but for all the goodwill in PM’s heart, he should keep in mind the history of his predecessors who had their hands burned in extending the olive branch towards Pakistan.
It’s all right to have good relations with your neighbour but it’s not wrong to keep an eye on it. Nawaz might want good relations with India but we are not sure if he has good grip on his army, intelligence service and their minions who scheme against India and its people. We have to keep a close eye on Pakistan, all talks aside they have no intention to put a lid on the militant groups that operates on its soil. Their war against terrorism will not extend to groups operating against India.
Let’s hope that these initiatives will lead to something positive between India and Pakistan but it’s wise to have some realistic expectations about these hopes.