Indian journalist sees Imran Khan as India’s best bet
According to a Washington Post opinion piece written by Indian journalist Barkha Dutt, Prime Minister Imran Khan is presently India’s Best Bet.
Ms. Dutt is an Indian journalist was among the 22 other journalists, who had been invited to Pakistan at the invitation of Imran Khan’s government.
All these journalists had been invited to report on the opening of a visa-free corridor for Sikh pilgrims in the border village of Kartarpur.
“Pakistan’s Prime Minister, seems transformed by the burden of his post. I met him in Islamabad on the day he completed his 100th day in office. He appeared so much more reserved, circumspect and formal than I remember him.”
She wrote, “If there is to be even incremental progress between the two nuclear-armed nations that have fought four wars, Khan is presently India’s best bet.”
She further wrote that Imran Khan has two things going for him that his civilian predecessors did not.
One, the very fact of his closeness to the Pakistani military is an advantage for India. For too long, Indian bureaucrats have been locked in a stale, formulaic dialogue template with Pakistani counterparts who have no authority to take any independent decisions.
The India-Pakistan relationship cannot be run by bureaucratic thinking anymore. It cannot be steered by un-empowered civilian politicians in Pakistan as was the case with ousted Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.
Imran Khan made it a point to tell us he wouldn’t be “One of those Pakistani politicians who will say, “I want to do this, but my Army won’t let me.”
The other significant yet underreported statement by Khan in his conversation with us was a reference to what policy wonks call the Musharraf-Manmohan Four Point Formula for Kashmir.
Also Check: Complete Report Of 100 Days And PM Khan’s Speech
It is now known that India and Pakistan almost reached a Kashmir settlement when Gen. Pervez Musharraf, Pakistan’s former army chief was also the country’s president and Manmohan Singh was the Indian prime minister.
Khan’s reiteration of the template and his description of Kashmir as “solvable”is intriguing, and need closer attention.
Whether under pressure from China or as an overture to the Americans who have announced the withdrawal of $300 million in aid, Khan and Pakistan’s army chief both seem to be sending some intriguing smoke signals.
The opening of the corridor:
On November 28, Prime Minister Imran Khan performed the groundbreaking of the 4km-long corridor which would connect GurdwaraDarbar Sahib at Kartarpur in Narowal with Dera Baba Nanak in India’s Gurdaspur district.
The government had announced that it aimed to open the visa-free corridor on Baba Guru Nanak’s 550th birth anniversary, next year.
Referring to the opening of the corridor, the journalist termed it to be a joyous celebration of anti-imperialism.
“A corridor for the free movement of pilgrims into Pakistan should have been a brief moment of reconciliation in a severely damaged relationship.”
Source: The Washington Post