India and Pakistan are two significant countries of Asia that have a history of bitter relations spanning over six decades since their independence in 1947. The two countries have fought three full scale wars (1948, 1965 and 1971) and now uncomfortably share common borders with each other as nuclear neighbours. Both have important strategic and geographical advantages of location besides being rising economic powers of the region. On the military front, both states are among the top ten countries of the world having large conventional armies. Both boast of having stockpiles of nuclear weapons and sophisticated delivery systems comprising long-range ballistic missiles. Indias Prithvi and Pakistans Shaheen and Ghauri missiles are all claimed to have a range of more than 2500 kilometers. The nuclear capabilities of both states have become deterrence against a possible war. Neither of the two states has signed or ratified the NPT as they both want to acquire more and more nuclear weapons for their self defense and protection. There is a consciousness in both New Delhi and Islamabad that in case of a war, none would emerge victorious because atomic bombs can cause huge destruction in terms of lives and material. So peace overtures have also been made recently by both sides with several CBMs put in place in the last decade. Let us hope that both these states learn to live like good neighbors and concentrate on economic development and peaceful relations rather than having an arms race. -SEHRISH IMTIAZ, Rawalpindi, May 29.