“Treachery, though at first very

cautious, in the end betrays itself.”

– Livy

It is unfortunate that the latest anti-Pakistan frenzy being whipped by India’s media, backed by its intelligence agency RAW and rightwing Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP), is to pressurise Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh to call off his meeting with his Pakistani counterpart Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in New York next month. This war-mongering attitude is likely to hinder the prospect of resolving all outstanding issues through dialogue between India and Pakistan.

Also, when Indian Foreign Minister Salman Khurshid refused to cancel talks between the two PMs, the powerful forces in India enacted a perfect drama: a 70-year-old Indian citizen Syed Abdul Karim Tunda alias Tunda, who allegedly is one of India's top 20 wanted terrorists and mastermind of over 40 bombings in the country, was arrested by Delhi Police from the Indo-Nepal border. According to the Indian media, he worked for Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), Dawood Ibrahim's gang (D company) and Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI).

However, a striking coincidence of the drama is that once again a wanted terrorist has been caught on the border between India and Nepal, as it was in the case of Ajmal Kasab. One is reminded of some other cases like the Samjhota Express, Malegaon Blasts, etc that have to a great extent revealed the anti-Pakistan campaign being launched in India.

Also, when Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde admitted that there were training camps run by Hindu extremists, who were spreading terrorism in India on various pretexts, he was declared a Pakistani agent.

Anyway, now when Congress-led leadership desires to embrace the peace initiative launched by PML-N government, fundamentalists in India, especially in its military and intelligence services, seem frustrated and thus have brought in the alleged terrorist, Tunda, to subvert all efforts to engage in a meaningful dialogue. The recent surge in border violations in occupied Kashmir, especially in the Nangi Tekri area of Krishna Ghati sector in Poonch district, too leads to the fact that they are hell-bent on creating a situation that would postpone the talks.

On the other side, Pakistan’s government is showing restraint and, perhaps, political acumen by doing everything possible to ensure that the process of dialogue is not derailed at any cost. However, some political analysts in Pakistan suggest that Prime Minister Nawaz should slow down (but not give up) his efforts to achieve friendship with India. According to them, it would be prudent if Islamabad waits till the outcome of Indian elections scheduled to be held in 2014.

Needless to say, India’s elections and America’s exit from Afghanistan will have a deep impact on the South Asian region. Thus, utmost caution and restraint is required from both nations, India and Pakistan, so that the basic purpose of achieving peace and harmony is possible.

Meanwhile, it would be better if Tunda’s confessions are ignored by both India and Pakistan, since worldwide there are several examples of abuse of power by police in such matters. Similarly, Indian police officials are no better and, in some cases, have shown the worst behaviour against people, not even sparing women and children, mainly in occupied Kashmir. The so-called confessions, therefore, will have some justification because a 70-year-old man may not be able to endure the punishment that could be administered to him if he tried to speak the truth.

It is, nevertheless, expected that New Delhi will be able to overcome not only the media frenzy, but also the pressure that has been mounted on it by BJP and will move on to embrace the peace proposals put forward by Pakistan.

It is hoped that Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif will be able to convince his counterpart about Pakistan’s legitimate concerns on issues like water distribution, Sir Creek, Siachen and the Kashmir issue. Negotiations, indeed, remain the only way forward for the two countries to resolve their outstanding problems.

The writer has been associated with various newspapers as editor and columnist.