Thaw in Indo-Pak ties to usher peace in the region
By: Er. Ishfaq Khaliq
The new thaw in Indo-Pak ties is a huge plus when it comes to rebuilding the diplomatic relations between these two neighbours who have a history of sustained animosity spread over decades. Both India and Pakistan are expected to polish their diplomatic ties which were not going smooth after Indian govt revoked the special status of Jammu and Kashmir and dividing the state into two union territories in 2019.
Fortunately, the nuclear neighbours are now reinstating their high commissioners in each other’s capital after their mission was downgraded in 2019. New Delhi may also allow the SAARC summit to commence this time which has been continuously pending since 2016 due to the tensions over the Uri attack. The SAARC summit is likely to take place later this year and informed opinions also expect the prime minister to visit Islamabad to attend the meet.
A day before the 2nd anniversary of the Balakote airstrike, India and Pakistan issued a joint statement to have talks between the DGMO’S of both countries and the statement reads as follows:
‘…address each other’s core issues and concerns which have the propensity to disturb the peace and lead to violence’. Both sides agreed for strict observance of all agreements, understandings and cease firing along the Line of Control and all other sectors with effect from midnight 24/25 Feb 2021.’
The DGMO Talks took place in the wake of a series of dialogues that were held between, Ajith Doval, the National Security Advisor of India and Moeed Yousef, the Pakistan premier’s aide on National Security. The Talks were further strengthened by the statement of Pakistan’s Army chief General Qamar Javid Bajwa who said that “…it is time to extend the hand of peace in all directions.” This was followed by another very positive gesture when Anurag Srivastava- spokesperson of India for the ministry of external affairs- issued a statement stating that “…we have always maintained that we are committed to addressing issues, if any, in a peaceful bilateral manner. On key issues, our position remains unchanged.”
Since these developments took place, the border villages Jammu and Kashmir have had a sigh of relief as the guns and mortals have gone silent. The ties between the two countries are taking a new shape as it is the reflection of ongoing disengagement that is taking place between India amid china in the eastern Ladakh sector on L.O.C. Also, M.M Naravanes statement, which he issued recently, was an open appreciation for the bettering of diplomatic ties.
Interestingly, it was for the first time that when a meeting was recently held on covid19, Pakistan didn’t bring up the Jammu and Kashmir issue. The meeting was hosted by PM Modi.
THE SAARC SUMMIT
New Delhi is also contemplating to attend the summit-level meeting of the South Asian Association for the Regional Corporation. It has been pending since 2016 when India campaigned with members like Bangladesh, Afghanistan and Bhutan not to participate in order to diplomatically isolate Pakistan from such summits. However, India invited all SAARC members to cooperate on the covid19 pandemics and also gave 10 million dollars for emergency funds.
The bettering of ties between the two neighbours has been appreciated and hailed by leaders, political commentators as well as analysts across the board.