Jammu, January 18
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has laid a ground rule for the essence of dialogue with Pakistan , that the latter “ must walk away from terror.” It must do so for the peace and harmony in South Asia , particularly between the two countries that share a common history, culture and are neighbor of neighbours.
Modi’s remarks at second Raisina dialogue in New Delhi on Tuesday were reiteration of his old conviction that the dialogue cannot move in the noise of the bomb explosions . He has a point because whenever initiatives have been made from the Indian side, Pakistan’s non-state actors patronized by the state actors ensure that the process is derailed before it takes off.
It cannot be just a coincidence that when former Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee travelled to Lahore by bus in February 1999, , Kargil happened . Kargil war is symptomatic of Himalayan betrayal by Pakistan – high scale terrorism as a return gift to India’s hand for friendship. And, again when Modi made a surprise visit to Lahore to greet his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif on his birthday , his gift too was returned with attack on Pathankot air base.. The birth of the new effort to rejuvenate friendship and peace was scuttled . As if this was not enough , most striking terror attack took place in Jammu and Kashmir’s frontier town of Uri in which 20 Indian soldiers last their lives.
Terrorism is a real problem . The terrorism exported by Pakistan to India is multilayered – it is religious , political and full of its territorial ambitions of Islamabad . All this is noted in the history of the international observers . Pakistan must realize that its high pedestal cover of “ moral, diplomatic and political “ support to “ Kashmiris fighting for the right of self-determination,” has long been shred into pieces . No one knows it better than Kashmiris themselves. They may not speak it openly, but they do know that who undid their dreams and why ? They are scared of speaking against Pakistan because crowds of gun men it controls in Kashmir, who work at its behest. This is the truth and this should be accepted , though the blunders of Delhi had contributed no less in the situation in which Kashmir find it today.
Modi is right that “ India alone cannot walk the path of peace . It also has to be Pakistan’s journey to make .” This is truth . Pakistan must accept this . The mutual recriminations would not work. Pakistan must heed the advice of Modi . It must also realize that it is Modi alone who can take a bold decision with such a massive mandate . If this opportunity is missed , then for decades, we may not see another leader with such a mandate to translate mission peace and friendship with Pakistan into a reality.
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