Addressing Lok Sabha on Wednesday, Indian Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh claimed that New Delhi was continuing to hold dialogue with Pakistan to normalize relations but Islamabad was not delivering on terrorism. He described the recent flare-up on the Line of Control (LoC) as a negative influence on dialogue adding that progress had been possible in some areas like trade and people-to-people contacts, but he had yet to see tangible progress on dismantling the terrorism infrastructure in Pakistan and bringing to justice culprits of the Mumbai terror attack.
Dr Singh forgot conveniently India’s failings in improving bilateral ties. Recent unprovoked firing on Pakistani soldiers across the LoC by Indian troops has made the strains in relations severer. The hostile outburst of Hindu extremist outfits Shiv Sena and cancellation of snooker team’s visit to Karachi have further vitiated the atmosphere. Pakistan has always wanted the relations to look up, but India has done nothing to resolve the long-pending Kashmir dispute. The controversy over the proposed private visit of Pakistani Prime Minister Raja Pervaiz Ashraf to Ajmer has added salt to injury. Such attitude would take the two major SAARC partners nowhere.