Can the India-Pakistan relations improve? - Perspective - Herald
Economic relations between India and Pakistan over the past 50 years have been. Relations between India and Pakistan have been complex and largely hostile due to a number .. India's relations with Afghanistan, Pakistan's neighbor, and its increasing presence there has irked Pakistan. The Indian embassy bombing. In the last 65 years, India and Pakistan have been unable to resolve their differences and develop a normal good neighbourly relationship.
A problem closely related to that of Kashmir is the distribution of the water of the rivers flowing from there into Pakistan.
Pakistan has a predominantly agrarian economy and, being a lower riparian state, has naturally been concerned about continuation of an adequate supply of irrigation water.
The problem was thought to have been resolved in the early s through the Indus Basin Treaty, mediated by the World Bank. But the problem is far from settled, as Pakistan has raised concerns over some of the Indian hydroelectric projects under construction on the western rivers that will affect waters for which Pakistan has the rights.
The water problem has a serious potential to precipitate conflict in the future, given the rising requirements and shrinking supplies. The Nuclear Dimension Some commentators hoped in that the overt possession of nuclear weapons by both India and Pakistan would bring about the realisation that any conflict between them would have catastrophic consequences for both countries and would, therefore, result in strategic stability. Unfortunately, that expected peace dividend is yet to be attained.
Instead, a steady nuclear weapon and missile competition continues, in the absence of an overarching restraint regime.India-Pakistan Relations: How Can They Be Improved? - 19 August 2018 - 92NewsHD
Pakistan has responded by introducing battlefield nuclear weapons. Afghanistan The conflict in Afghanistan has also had spill-over effects on Indo-Pakistani relations.
With uncertainties surrounding the internal dynamics of a post-NATO Afghanistan, it also could become an arena for India-Pakistan hostility to play out. That would have serious consequences, not only for the peace and stability of Afghanistan, but also for the region as a whole.
India–Pakistan relations - Wikipedia
In the past decade, it has brought the two countries to the verge of war in and again in ; it also derailed the Composite Dialogue process between them, which appeared to be regaining some traction after a hiatus of three years. Hopes were further raised by the election of Nawaz Sharif to the office of Prime Minister. Sharif has made no secret of his wish for peace and warmer relations between India and Pakistan, despite the fact that he has not received reciprocation from India.
The recent eruption of violence across the Line of Control in Kashmir, which in normal times would be a routine affair, has been blown out of proportion by the Indian media and some political parties with an eye on the forthcoming national elections in India.
Incidents such as the attack on the Pakistani High Commission in New Delhi by political activists can only add to the acrimony.
Such incidents have compounded the already acute trust deficit between the two countries. Pakistan complains that India has provided material support, through Afghanistan, to the insurgents in Baluchistan and parts of the Federally Administered Tribal areas in the north-west and is now unhappy that instead of a responding to peace overtures, India is ratcheting up the anti-Pakistan rhetoric.
If the proposed meeting between the two Prime Ministers on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly meeting in New York in September takes place as planned, it will hopefully help in improving the atmospherics of India-Pakistan relations. Areas of Common Interest Peace and stability are pre-requisites for economic development, trade and politico-socio-cultural relations. This has assumed added urgency since South Asia has obtained nuclear capability, as there is now little margin for error.
It is imperative that the security situation in South Asia is stabilised and made as resistant as possible to the periodic shocks caused by the actions of NSAs. Avoidance of crises, prevention of conflicts and the building of mutual confidence should therefore be common objectives for the two countries.
There is a huge potential for the expansion of bilateral trade between India and Pakistan, especially now that the long-standing issue of Pakistan granting Most Favoured Nation status to India seems closer than ever to being resolved.
But other issues, such as non-tariff barriers to trade, will have to be addressed before any positive move can be made towards increasing trade. There is also a long list of items on the negative list which have to be looked at before significant improvement can be achieved. The promotion of official trade will discourage smuggling and other means of illegal trade that at present cost the two countries substantial lost revenue.
The serious energy shortages faced by both countries are hampering their economic development. India cannot maintain a healthy economic growth rate if its energy resources remain inadequate, as was made apparent by the total blackout of northern India in July In Pakistan, normal public life has been badly disrupted by chronic electricity outages for many years and the scarcity of energy has also adversely affected industrial output.
It would be in the interests of the two countries to forge co-operation in the field of energy. TAPI depends largely on peace and stability in Afghanistan, which means that India and Pakistan should have a peaceful and stable Afghanistan as a common cause, rather than competing for influence there.
In the much longer term, depending on the overall state of their relations, the two countries could possibly also collaborate in the field of nuclear energy. How to Achieve the Desired Outcomes The Lahore Memorandum of Understanding was the first Indo-Pakistani effort to come to grips with their mutual problems and to explore measures to reduce tensions in a nuclearised South Asia.
Though the process was interrupted by the Kargil episode, the proposed confidence-building measures CBMs were taken up when the composite dialogue resumed inresulting in some significant bilateral agreements.
It appears, however, that the list of CBMs agreed to at Lahore has been exhausted and currently there seems to be no discernible forward movement in the bilateral talks. It is important that negotiators think of new and innovative CBMs and establish an oversight and review mechanism to monitor the performance of past agreements, to give some impetus to the peace process.
The efforts at building confidence and trust and seeking resolution of disputes can only bear fruit if the process is sustained and remains uninterrupted. India can more easily absorb these costs although they may slow down its economic transformation and hamper or even thwart its Great Power aspirations.
For Pakistan, semi-permanent confrontation with India renders the necessary transition from a security state to a development state very difficult.
This limits prioritised allocation of resources for human resource development and capacity-building of essential civil and political institutions. As a result, the quality of governance, delivery of socioeconomic justice and political stability are degraded.
Pakistan loses and a hostile India gains. Our history confirms this. To deal with a host of domestic and external challenges converging upon Pakistan, radical and rapid progress on a broad front of issues will be essential.
This includes reducing the Indian threat through principled and sensible policies that do not involve sell-outs on any issue.
India and Pakistan are neighbouring nuclear powers with no room to rectify miscalculations in a crisis. Unfortunately, the constant tension increases the risk of unintended utter disaster.
At present, India and Pakistan are not engaging with each other except for contacts between their national security advisers. Pakistan is prepared for dialogue but India is playing hardball.
The fact is that even if structured and comprehensive bilateral dialogue is resumed, progress on the issue of Jammu and Kashmir will be extremely difficult to achieve. India is the bigger party that is unwilling to alter the territorial status quo in a way that could provide a basis for an eventual settlement acceptable to the Kashmiri people.