- In a letter to his newly sworn-in Pakistani counterpart, Prime Minister of India has called for building good neighbourly ties for security and prosperity in the South Asian region.
- PM expressed India’s commitment to build good neighbourly relations between India and Pakistan and pursue meaningful and constructive engagement for the benefit of the people of the region.
- Pakistan has also committed to remove the trust deficit with neighbours and try to build new bridges.
- Relations between India and Pakistan have been complex due to a number of historical and political events.
- Relations between the two states have been defined by the violent partition of British India in 1947, the Kashmir conflict and the numerous military conflicts fought between the two nations.
- Since their independence, the two countries have fought three major wars, one undeclared war and have been involved in numerous armed skirmishes and military standoffs.
- The Kashmir conflict is the main center- point of all of these conflicts.
- There have been numerous attempts to improve the relationship notably, the Shimla summit, the Agra summit and the Lahore summit.
- Since the early 1980s, relations between the two nations soured particularly after the Siachen conflict, the intensification of Kashmir insurgency in 1989, Indian and Pakistani nuclear tests in 1998 and the 1999 Kargil war.
- Certain confidence building measures such as the 2003 ceasefire agreement and the Delhi–Lahore Bus service were successful in deescalating tensions. However, these efforts have been impeded by periodic terrorist attacks.
- After the appointment of the new government in Pakistan, India has called for constructive approach for the benefit of the people, by which it meant Pakistan should create a conducive atmosphere.
Brings hopes for Kashmir
- Major political parties and the Hurriyat in Jammu and Kashmir expressed support for a Kashmir-centric dialogue between India and Pakistan, welcoming the intent for “constructive engagement” and “uninterrupted dialogue”.
Possible Implications of the Indo-Pak dialogue
- It is in the interest of Kashmir and also in the interest of the entire region if the two countries come closer and resolve the long-pending Kashmir dispute
- The improved relations can bring peace, security and prosperity in the Indian subcontinent, also can make it free of terror and violence, and focus on development.
- Overland transit trade between India and Pakistan could be the game changer for both the economies.
- It is a crucial development, though the issues are tough and will not be solved overnight, but we have to engage continuously to bring positive outcomes.
- The “new Pakistan,” and the willingness of the Indian Prime Minister to consider a “fresh start” in bilateral relations suggests there might be an opportunity to bring peace, strength and development to the region.