Pakistan has decided to release Indian Air Force Pilot Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman on 1st March 2019. This was stated by Pakistan PM Imran Khan in the parliament. Indian critics claim that this is only the second time in the history that Pakistan is seeking peace with India, the first time being in 1971 Bangladesh Liberation War.
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Earlier, PM Imran Khan had reiterated dialogue to resolve issues, Narendra Modi, the Indian Prime Minister said at this time, the country’s emotions are at a different level. He said the country’s brave soldiers are showing their valour at the border and ‘beyond’. “The entire country is one and standing with our soldiers,” Modi said the enemy has tried to destabilize the nation, carried out terror attacks and wanted to stop India’s growth. “We all countrymen are standing like a rock to counter their evil designs.”
However, Modi forgot to inform the nation that Pakistan has offered ‘dialogue and peace talks’. Why is New Delhi not ready to resume talks with Islamabad? PM Khan, ever since taking up the prime ministership, has stressed ‘talks’ as the sole option for both countries to move forward. He has said time and again that Pakistan is moving away from conflict and heading towards development and economic prosperity.
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However, the Indians are not on the same page with him. New Delhi wants Pakistan to eradicate completely terrorism from its soil and hand over key sponsors of terrorism like Hafiz Sayeed, Maulana Masood Azhar amongst many more. Critics in Pakistan state that New Delhi is keen to ignite a regional conflict and wants the impose a war on Pakistan. The question still remains, how will India benefit from a prolonged conflict with Pakistan?
Critics in Pakistan state that the most blatant motive could be the upcoming Lok Sabha elections in India. Not deterred by the war-like atmosphere, the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is continuing with its election rallies and Pakistan bashing politics.
BJP, with its Hindutva ideology, in its five years of reign has revived ‘Hinduism’ and ‘nationalism’. And what better way to be re-elected than warring with Pakistan and playing ‘vote-bank politics’ with the emotions of ‘nationalists’ and ‘Hindus’. The BJP has been riding high on nationalism and Hindutva. It sees itself as the ‘sole-protector’ of the Hindus according to critics in Islamabad.
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Critics in Islamabad state that Pakistan’s emerging role as ‘a peacemaker’ between the United States and Taliban is irking New Delhi. India may be feeling politically left out by the United States and Afghanistan, whom it considers a ‘friend’.
India has been vocal on its polarity in South Asia and it has even indirectly told the US that they do not have any ‘role or business’ in Afghanistan’s personal issues and they could solve it themselves. New Delhi’s dilemma also continued when the Taliban spokesman said “Afghan Hindus and Sikhs are our countrymen.
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Just as all Afghans have rights in this country, our Hindu and Sikh countrymen will have their own rights that shall be guaranteed.” India is ‘scared’ that Afghan Taliban will come into power with a ‘pro-Pakistan agenda’. And this will definitely put New Delhi’s economic and development in Afghanistan in a fix.
Though Pakistan hasn’t flourished economically since the partition, there are signs of improvement with investments coming in from Saudi Arabia, Turkey, China, UAE and Qatar under the dynamic leadership of PM Imran Khan.
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With Imran Khan, an ex-cricketer turned politician, now Prime Minister, the world’s focus has suddenly turned to Pakistan and many nations have shown a keen interest in investing in Pakistan. Critics state that a prosperous Pakistan will be a headache for India as Islamabad will get the economic muscle to purchase more advanced weapons and continue to aggressively fund terrorism in Kashmir and Afghanistan and dominate the region.
Today, the situation is such that New Delhi considers China as the biggest threat to India and not arch-rival Pakistan, who might be the sworn enemies of India, but lacks the economic power to fund and sustain a conflict.
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