The Indian and Pakistani reactions to the post-Mumbai carnage present an interesting study of the bilateral relations between Islamabad and New Delhi. The respective positions taken by the leaderships of both countries since the event took place on November 26 have implications for the future direction of India-Pakistan peace dialogue under the composite dialogue framework (CDF), which is presently halted. A quick look at the traditional viewpoints of Islamabad and New Delhi is in order: In response to any reference of the disputed issues by Pakistan to the United Nations including the core issue of Jammu and Kashmir on which the UNSC's resolutions are still pending, the stated position of the Indian establishment, irrespective of any party being in power, has been that Pakistan and India needed to resolve these issues bilaterally without brooking any third party interference or the UN resolutions for that matter. That is why it always opposed Islamabad's efforts for third party's arbitration on the Kashmir issue. India also took strong exception to the statement of the President-elect Obama about the need for resolution of the Kashmir issue for Pakistan's enhanced performance against War On Terror on its western border. It strongly rebutted Obama's idea of appointing special envoy like former president Bill Clinton on Kashmir. On the other hand, the traditional Pakistani position was premised on the role of UN or any other third party mediation for the resolution of the Kashmir issue because in its view, the Kashmir issue had an international character involving the question of right to self-determination of Kashmiris. What further added to Pakistan's emphasis on the international aspect of the Kashmir problem is the presence of UN resolutions. Pakistan's political parties have had a consensus on this aspect. It does not mean that it rebutted the idea of bilateralism out of hand but the focus was to be on the involvement of international community in any form for mediatory role in the Kashmir imbroglio. This traditional stance of Pakistan was weakened during the reign of President Musharraf when he made unilateral offers to India and even expressed his country's readiness to go beyond the UN resolutions. The resumption of peace process under the composite dialogue framework in January 2004 indicated Pakistan's preference for the bilateral arrangement instead of international mediation. Global or multilateral route was not altogether abandoned as occasional statements by various tiers of officialdom did indicate to the presence of UN resolutions or the need of third party involvement. India has squandered a rare opportunity of advancing the peace process when it chose confrontationist route by spurning olive branch extended by President Zardari during his address to the Leadership Summit 2008. It should have known that a democratically elected government was in a better position to do business as it enjoys popular mandate and can sell its viewpoint to people by virtue of its representative character. This facility is not available to a dictatorial regime. Better sense can still prevail if India gives up its jingoistic stance and comes to the negotiating table with Pakistan. Terrorists would achieve great success if India allows the 'pause' in peace process to become permanent. Peoples of both India and Pakistan deserve better. Pakistan has done its bit to let India reciprocate. The writer is a freelance columnist