Pragmatic | India’s good behaviour

Pakistan is citing India’s good behaviour after suffering from terror as an example to Afghanistan

This is surreal. Pakistan’s ambassador to the UN, Abdullah Hussain Haroon lecturing Afghanistan President, Hamid Karzai by citing India’s example:

“I wish President Karzai could take a leaf out of the Indian book, instead of being accusatory towards Pakistan,” Haroon told PTI here. H said even if a “leaf falls on the grass in Afghanistan,” the Afghan leader points a finger towards Islamabad, saying the “Pakistanis must have done it. It does not work that way. I think India would be a good example for Karzai to follow in which he should realise that this accusatory game gets no where”.

The Pakistani envoy said if India and his country are building ties, Afghanistan should “take a cue” and also be on the same track and “learn from India which has shown, in my mind, such enormous maturity”. “Let’s talk to each other…. May be something good comes of it. That is what is happening between India and Pakistan. I think it is a proud moment for both countries,” he said.

Haroon further said the soothsayers who feel that another 26/11 would break up the India-Pak dialogue process should not be paid any heed to and instead a message should be sent that the talks will continue to progress despite any such incident in either country. “Despite whatever happens, we (need to) keep the talks going so that no one is encouraged to take the track off,” he said adding “now that we have started, we will keep talking”. Standards have been set in New York, New Delhi and Islamabad and the momentum has to be taken forward, he said.[Outlook]

As if almost on cue, India’s former foreign secretary Kanwal Sibal has a column in today’s Telegraph (Kolkatta) where he lambasts Indian government for the behaviour which has earned such high praise from the Pakistani diplomat.

The romantics in India never lose faith in the possibility of friendship with Pakistan. To that end they will advocate the proposition of an uninterrupted and uninterruptible dialogue with Pakistan, one that removes any pretence of a link between dialogue and terrorism and therefore suits Pakistan. This is why its neophyte foreign minister has begun touting the same phraseology.

Pakistan’s relations with India have become less volatile in recent months largely because of the Indian government’s extraordinarily soft approach. India will have another round of a composite dialogue with Pakistan; it is reconciled to Pakistani prevarications on justice for the Mumbai attack. Our approach seems to be that if our reasonable demands are not met, the demands should be dropped. We seek to deblock situations by exploring concessions.

We have lifted our objections to World Trade Organization-violative concessions by the European Union to Pakistan in the textile sector. At the recent summit of the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation in the Maldives, we have promised a preferential trade agreement with Pakistan even though it continues to exclude India from the South Asian Free Trade Area. Pakistan’s backtracking on the granting of the most favoured nation status to India has not discouraged us from making ill-timed gestures and losing bargaining leverage unnecessarily. What diplomatic purpose is served by praising the prime minister of a country most hostile to us as a man of peace, particularly as he is in no position to deliver peace to us?[Telegraph]

This is the essence of the argument. If Indian approach is that ‘if our reasonable demands are not met, the demands should be dropped’, Pakistani establishment will love and adore the Indian officials. And their audacity has reached such surreal levels that they are lecturing Karzai on how to respond after suffering from terrorist attacks planned, organised and supported by Pakistani state agencies and their proxies — the way India has responded after every terror strike from Pakistan.

Indians deserve better than this craven behaviour from their own democratically elected government. And Government of India, you don’t need these good behaviour certificates from Pakistani diplomats when the perpetrators of terror against Indians continue to thrive in Pakistan. If Delhi needs to make something uninterrupted and uninterruptible, it has to be this demand to bring those perpetrators to book. The rest can wait.

DISCLAIMER: This is an archived post from the Indian National Interest blogroll. Views expressed are those of the blogger's and do not represent The Takshashila Institution’s view.