Pakistan-India relationship: ‘New era’ dawns in ties

Published: July 27, 2011

" We have some distance to travel, but I’m sure we can reach our destination of having a friendly relationship," Indian Foreign Minister SM Krishna.

" We have some distance to travel,
but I’m sure we can reach our destination of having a friendly
relationship," Indian Foreign Minister
SM Krishna. Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh (R) gestures while talking with Pakistan Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar (L) during a meeting in New Delhi on July 27, 2011. PHOTO: AFP Indian Foreign Minister S. M. Krishna (L) shakes hands with his Pakistani counterpart Hina Rabbani Khar (R) prior to a meeting in New Delhi on July 27, 2011. PHOTO: AFP
NEW DEHLI: 

As the Indian media swooned over Hina Rabbani Khar’s social graces and fashion sense, Jane Birkin handbag, Chanel sunglasses, her pearls and her diamonds, substantive gains were made in the people-to-people component of India’s relations with Pakistan in her talks with Indian Foreign Minister SM Krishna.

But some Indian analysts raged and ranted over the manner in which New Delhi had ‘given up’ the initiative on terrorism and merely registered its ‘disapproval’ of Khar’s meeting with Kashmiri politicians.

However, those who want the India-Pakistan engagements to continue strongly backed Khar’s statement that dialogue between the two countries should be ‘uninterrupted and uninterruptible’ – a phrase that Congress MP Mani Shankar Aiyar claimed Khar had borrowed from him.

Appearing at a joint news conference with Khar after their two and half hours of talks, Krishna said ties were back ‘on the right track,’ while Khar spoke of a ‘mindset change’ that had ushered in a ‘new era of cooperation’.

“We have some distance to travel, but with an open mind and a constructive approach … I am sure we can reach our desired destination of having a friendly and cooperative relationship,” Krishna said.

Khar said: “A new generation of Indians and Pakistanis will see a relationship that will hopefully be much different from the one that has been experienced in the last two decades.”

On the thorny issue of terrorism, the two foreign ministers agreed to work more closely to fight militancy and to bring to justice perpetrators of the Mumbai attacks which, New Delhi believes, were carried out by Pakistan-based militants.

“We have agreed …to fight and eliminate this scourge in all forms,” Krishna said. “We have also agreed on the need to strengthen cooperation in counter-terrorism to bring those responsible for terror crimes to justice.”

(Read: India, Pakistan in post-Mumbai phase)

Krishna said the two countries had agreed to ease travel restrictions, boost bus services frequency and double the number of days goods could be traded across the Line of Control – the de facto border in the Himalayan state of Kashmir. “I can confidently say our relations are on the right track,” he said.

A joint statement issued after the meeting outlined the commitment of both sides to fight terrorism, boost trade and keep the peace process going.

Indian foreign policy experts, including former Foreign Secretary Kanwal Sibal, objected to the reference to counterterrorism and progress on the Mumbai trials while omitting altogether any reference to the status of the trials of those charged in the conspiracy in Pakistan.“There should have been a more extended reference to terrorism,” said former deputy national security adviser Leela Ponappa.

Aside from an agreement on facilitating each other’s prisoners, the two sides also agreed on a slew of confidence building measures (CBMs) on Kashmir.

But on the progress of the trials of the Mumbai blasts, the Indian side said it got no convincing assurances from Pakistan.

“Pakistan said: we are also victims of terror. But where is the equivalence? Pakistan is a victim because of its own mistakes. But we (India) are victims because Pakistan nurtures terrorists. What has changed after these talks?” asked Kanwal Sibal.

Despite the official upbeat assessment of the talks, it appears that Khar’s meetings with Kashmiri politicians have not gone down well with the Indians. She met Syed Ali Geelani and Mirwaiz Umar Farooq, chiefs of their respective factions of the All Parties Hurriyat Conference (APHC) on Tuesday.

Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao said the meetings illustrated the ‘divergence’ between the two countries. “We have a very different point of view from Pakistan on that particular event (the meeting) and we have expressed our concerns in a frank and candid manner to the Pakistan side,” Rao told reporters.

Pakistan Foreign Secretary Salman Bashir moved quickly to dismiss the Indian apprehensions. “This matter of the meeting yesterday cannot be construed in any manner including intentionally or by design to cast any shadow on today’s talks,” he said. “I think we should not read more into it.”

Prime Minister Singh accepted an invitation to visit Pakistan at mutually convenient dates. (With additional input from AFP)

Published in The Express Tribune, July 28th, 2011.

on Twitter, become a fan on Facebook

Related Videos

Reader Comments (110)

  • Palvasha von Hassell
    Jul 27, 2011 - 1:08PM

    Yes, that’s the right spirit…btw, what a looker our Hina is! Sight for sore eyes. All success to you.

    Recommend

  • yousuf khan
    Jul 27, 2011 - 1:15PM

    for there to be stability we need to first eliminate the islamic fascists who have made life hell for our own people.how many of our own people has bharat,amreeka or the yahodis killed over the last decade and how many have our muslim brothers killed ?
    our number one enemy is islamic fascism,this obsession of ours with india,israel and america is only because of the media’s full support of radical islam.

    we are pakistanis first and foremost,anything else like religion or ethnicity is secondary.

    Recommend

  • saqib bajwa
    Jul 27, 2011 - 1:20PM

    has ET hired a new rightwing comments moderator or has it outsourced the comment moderator’s job? because in the last few days a lot of people have noticed that only comments expressing support for islamic fascism are allowed to be posted.jehanzeb haque and others at ET should take a look into this,if you guys have hired new ppl then atleast take a look at what comments they are trashing and what rightwing garbage they are allowing to go through.does jhaque check his @mentions on twitter cus for the average joe there is no other way to provide feedback, the rightwing troll cabal at ET in hold of the web desk should take notice.if we wanted religious propaganda we would read ummat or nawai waqt ,not ET.

    Recommend

  • Realist
    Jul 27, 2011 - 1:21PM

    @yousuf khan:

    Speak for yourself. Majority disagrees. God comes first for me and most of the other Pakistanis. Uncomfortable with that? Live somewhere else.

    Recommend

  • Hafiz
    Jul 27, 2011 - 1:29PM

    In Islam it is not allowed for a adult women to shake hand with a non-mahram,, What the hell is going on in our country…may Allah give us hidayah…

    Recommend

  • Incredible
    Jul 27, 2011 - 1:33PM

    The best joint statement ever. Hats off to FM Hina for her sincerity. If carried out, India will massively help Pakistan in its economy. Welcome back Pakistan.

    Recommend

  • Suraj
    Jul 27, 2011 - 1:53PM

    India should get rid of Kashmir, any how it is not an economical contributor, takes a lot of taxpayers money for defense-related expenses. So India should get rid of Kashmir and demand 100 billion dollar compensation of from Pakistan, for developing the State.Recommend

  • Ramzan Ali
    Jul 27, 2011 - 2:09PM

    Bottom line is that nothing will happen with Indo-Pak relations as it will go as it was in the past…… We cannot expect anything from this govt in getting better relations with India……….Recommend

  • ashok sai
    Jul 27, 2011 - 2:14PM

    Next Ms.Khar will meet Rebiya Kadeer (leader of Muslim Uygur separatists) before meeting with Chinese foriegn ministry officials.Recommend

  • Indian
    Jul 27, 2011 - 2:15PM

    Peace CANNOT be achieved between two countries born out of hatred (PERIOD)

    Recommend

  • Vinayak
    Jul 27, 2011 - 2:16PM

    For once an Indian minister thought that wearing a tie would be appropriate.Recommend

  • Jul 27, 2011 - 2:20PM

    India should read between the lines on the following:

    But both sides kept their cool in the aftermath of a triple bomb attack in Mumbai this month that killed 24 people and injured more than 130. Police have yet to identify the suspects but security analysts suspect the home-grown Indian Mujahideen.

    All that glitter is not Gold. Any bomb balast or anti-state activity should be taken seriously.

    Remember Chechans though very tiny but are giving a very hard time to Russians as they are also curbing their indpendence.

    India must learn past mistkes and learn lessons from Chechniya that more such attacks may be expected. The more the delay the more the trouble.

    Writing is on the wall.

    Regards

    Dr. Saleem Siddiqi

    Johannesburg – South Africa

    Recommend

  • Hairaan
    Jul 27, 2011 - 2:26PM

    @yousuf khan:
    Sorry to say you need to correct your priority right. We are Muslim first and then Pakistani. The very first question you’ll be asked after dying will be “What is your religion?” not “What is your nationality?”.

    Recommend

  • Monty
    Jul 27, 2011 - 2:35PM

    Love the bag, is it by any chance Birkin :P

    Recommend

  • woohoo
    Jul 27, 2011 - 2:36PM

    Mr SM Krishna looks a very happy man. The talks must have shaped up pretty well.

    Recommend

  • M.REHAN BEHLEEM
    Jul 27, 2011 - 3:03PM

    We need young leaders like HINA RABBANI KHAR to bring a change in the politcs because I personally feel that youth can bring a big change in this country…!!!

    Recommend

  • Palvasha von Hassell
    Jul 27, 2011 - 3:21PM

    @Hafiz:

    The Trdaitions of the Prophet do not forbid it by declaring it Haram; it is allowed if the situation demands, and in the diplomatic world it would be absurd not to do so.
    So try to be constructive for your country and get an education.Recommend

  • woohoo
    Jul 27, 2011 - 3:31PM

    @Hairaan:

    The very first question you’ll be
    asked after dying will be “What is
    your religion?” not “What is your
    nationality?”.

    Just curious, but, who asks such questions to a dead body?

    Recommend

  • Palvasha von Hassell
    Jul 27, 2011 - 3:36PM

    @Realist:

    It is wrong to try to split people’s identity, which is (thankfully) a very complicated thing. In any case, Islam enjoins rationality and wisdom on its followers. And that is just what is needed in the relations between nations. There is no contradiction between being a Pakistani, wanting good relations with your neighbouring countries and being a Muslim. Through diplomacy anf respect one can achieve wonders. Let us show the world how reasonable we can be as a counterpoint, for example, to the reprehensible war unleashed on the region by the U.S. Let us win each other’s hearts and stop the hate and intolerance. There is no concept of coercion in Islam.

    Recommend

  • Vinayak
    Jul 27, 2011 - 3:37PM

    @Dr. Saleem Siddiqi:
    Thanks for your ‘warning’, coming in the context of Indo-Pak talks. I am sure Indian state will deal with criminals as criminals are supposed to be dealt.

    A few mad-men can always cause big damage as the single terrorist in Norway has shown. I am confident Indian state has enough capability to catch and teach lessons to criminals.

    Also you forget that India is more than a billion strong. How many people can a few mad men kill.

    India is now one of the largest economies in the world. How much damage can a few mad men do.

    Recommend

  • antony
    Jul 27, 2011 - 4:41PM

    @Dr saleem, Thanks for your impending warning to India through Chechen style code word.Soon South african police with Indian RAW officials would knock your door to have a quiet discussion about the information you possess.Thanks

    Recommend

  • antony
    Jul 27, 2011 - 4:45PM

    @palvasha, yes thats the right spirit !! . What a looker our Krishna is ..Sight of sore eyes!!!

    Recommend

  • amoghavarsha.ii
    Jul 27, 2011 - 4:52PM

    @Dr.Saleem Siddiqi, what are u talking. More bomb blast in India? Well with people like you what else to expect. we have to live with it and manage to reduce it. but will not compromise Already seen this for 1000s of years, lets see for another 1000years.
    But U be careful where ur are it is southafrica.Recommend

  • Tony Singh
    Jul 27, 2011 - 5:05PM

    @Hairaan:
    Wise guy when one is dead, one is dDEAD. There is no one to ask questions after that. This mentality of many religious fundamentalist (about other world) is the cause of all problems.

    Recommend

  • sumeet
    Jul 27, 2011 - 5:07PM

    this type of sugar coated comment for each other makes me sick.we will do this,we will do that,blah,blah…everytime u read the joint statement it looks like they read the same joint statement over and over in all meetings.they came here only for 2 hour talk?and regarding mumbai attack,we have a very coward,incompetent and pakistan loving govt is at place who can not even ask pak to hand over all the culprits of mumbai attack.

    Recommend

  • GHQ
    Jul 27, 2011 - 5:08PM

    @ saleem sidiqi,lol yeah chechens are winning in russia just like LTTE is winning in sri lanka.get real man,no sane country will give up it’s territory because this will set a dangerous precedent.keep running after the pot of gold at end of the rainbow ,u aint getting kashmir .

    Recommend

  • vasan
    Jul 27, 2011 - 5:40PM

    Dr Saleem Siddqui:
    I think you have not kept yourself updated with things happening in INdia. Once a terrorist need not be a terrorist, Indian govt successfully negotiated with ULFA and they have surrendered their arms and negotiating with the govt to get their grievances solved. LTTE was finished with an overt support from India after they have conclusively rejected peaceful offers.
    We will handle SIMI, Indian Mujahideen etc ourselves. Just advice your govt to keep away from our affairs. That will be biggest CBM Pak can take.Recommend

  • Rashid
    Jul 27, 2011 - 5:54PM

    To say that Ms. Khar is fresh-blood, young-talent, or whatever, is putting mist in the eyes. O come on, the seat that she currently holds was preceded by someone who tried to take a stance on a matter (irrespective of the validity), and was sent off, despite being far-more senior. Now, Ms. Khar may be a talented and educated person, but she is a Foreign Minister of a government that hasn’t brought anything for its country and people, and therefore, she has microscopical credibility of making uninfluenced decisions.

    Recommend

  • Jul 27, 2011 - 6:23PM

    @Hafiz:
    Thats the problem with Pakistanis and has been for the last 30-40 years they think with their privates rather than with their heads!

    Maybe we should ask Mullah Fazlur Rehman to give you head?

    Recommend

  • Tony Singh
    Jul 27, 2011 - 6:32PM

    @Hafiz:
    So a “Fatwa” is in order? Like the one issued on Sherry Rehman during her parachute jumping stint?

    Recommend

  • Pashtun
    Jul 27, 2011 - 6:41PM

    @HAIRANI am a Pashtun first and then Muslim,because even once my ancestors followed Buddhism and Hinduism they were Pashtuns.

    Recommend

  • waqas
    Jul 27, 2011 - 6:49PM

    @ realist

    if u are uncomfortable with something , u should live somewhere else? what if someone from France tells muslim woman if u are uncomfortable with hijab ban go live somewhere else, would u accept that? no!
    i am a pakistani muslim too, but to me human being, no matter what religion, comes first..unfortunately people like u messed up our beloved country, no wonder, minorities feels left out but barbaric peoople like u!

    Recommend

  • Jul 27, 2011 - 7:10PM

    @vasan:
    When India did not kept away from our own internal affairs in 1971 during East Pakistan war and physically provided Indian Mukti Bahini how do you expect others to be quiet and be a khamoosh tamashai.

    Pakistan should and must avail all the opportunity.

    Regards

    Dr. Saleem Siddiqi

    Johannesburg – South Africa

    Recommend

  • malik
    Jul 27, 2011 - 7:36PM

    @Hairaan:
    “The very first question you’ll be asked after dying will be “What is your religion?” not “What is your nationality?”. “

    You are so right, and the following questions will also be asked.

    1.) “Why did you prefer natural death instead of nobly giving up life fighting for the sake of our religion ?”
    2.) “Are you a shia or sunni or ahmadi or sufi or some other group?’
    3.) “What did you do promote the good name of our Prophet (PBUH) during your temporary life on earth? ”
    4.) “How did you defend the religion whenever the disbelievers attacked it?”
    5.) “Did you have friendship with disbelievers at any point of time?”
    6.) “Tell one incident where you conducted yourself like a True Muslim”
    7.) “Tell me one incident when you smote fear in the heart of disbelievers.”
    8.) ‘If you believe in Jannah so much, then why are you are so late in coming here ?”

    Recommend

  • Thomas
    Jul 27, 2011 - 7:37PM

    @Rashid:

    There is not going to be any serious discussion about anything. I think she is too young and too inexperienced to be a foreign minister. Indians are going to be very nice and polite and will say we are going to look at all things, but nothing more is going to happen.

    Next time Indian foreign minister is in Pakistan, he should have a meeting with all the Baluchistan and Pakthunistan seperatists. What a stupid decision to meet with the Kashmir speratists before the meeting with primeminster and foreign minister. Pakistani Foreign ministers never had any clue what diplomatic niceties are!.

    Recommend

  • Jul 27, 2011 - 7:49PM

    I quite liked Mr Qureshi and poor guy looked sincere enough and was very handsome as well, although I welcome Ms Rabbani. But she will not be allowed to take decisions on her own and once the govt changes she will be gone!

    Recommend

  • alami_musafir
    Jul 27, 2011 - 8:40PM

    @Suraj – What a brilliant, sensible suggestion, although the price tag is too high and needs more negotiation. When one thinks of the time, effort, money not to mention the blood, sweat and tears which both countries have wasted over Kashmir it breaks one’s heart. It has been a piece of embedded rusting shrapnel in our national fabrics, slowly spreading its poison. The (British) erstwhile colonisers who are to blame for the problem, did so as part of their highly developed divideandrule policy. And how brilliantly successful this application of the policy has been !

    Both people (but dare I say it, more the Indians than the Pakistanis) have failed to take the long term view, have failed to see the wood for the trees. Grow up children, solve the problem…the solution is blindingly obvious, then grit your teeth and get on solving your developmental problems. See how far ahead the Chinese have got, even though we have some of the world’s brightest people. Next month it will be sixtyfour years since our independence, how much longer will it need for sense to finally prevail?Recommend

  • R S JOHAR
    Jul 27, 2011 - 8:56PM

    The Pak govt needs to be congratulated for appointing a competent FM who has handled her first assignment to India quite confidently. She is smart, intelligent and speaks flawless english choosing right words. Hope she is allowed to succeed keeping in view the mindset of people, who dictate foreign policy in Pakistan.

    Recommend

  • Jul 27, 2011 - 9:02PM

    Vienna,27-07-2011

    God biting god wars, even cold grurun wars,should be ended once for all.
    Young women are the best masters to silence them.I have all hopes of
    a successful career for Ms.Hina Rabbani Khar. I am ready to sing with
    her leadership Pakistan Zindabad.
    -Taravadu Taranga Trust for Media Monitoring, TTTMM, India
    –Kulamarva Balakrishna

    Recommend

  • Asadullah
    Jul 27, 2011 - 9:06PM

    @realist

    We are Muslims first and Pakistanis second,

    Islam says obey the rule of law of where you Live ! and be Patriotic to your country ! Recommend

  • Jul 27, 2011 - 9:31PM

    @Hafiz, she isnt there for representing tableeghi-jamaat.

    Recommend

  • Hairaan
    Jul 27, 2011 - 9:32PM

    @woohoo:
    The one who created you in the first place.

    Recommend

  • Hairaan
    Jul 27, 2011 - 9:35PM

    @Tony Singh:
    Its not your fault anyway. The comment was meant for the believers.

    Recommend

  • rock
    Jul 27, 2011 - 9:40PM

    @Dr. Saleem Siddiqi: Issue of bangladesh has to be discussed with respective country and not with India. They will inform you everything. It starts from election of 1970, majority votes won by Awami league. Opposition leader Bhutto along with your army rejected the mandate. and so on. I thought pak appointed rahman commission and the report is not disclose yet.

    Recommend

  • asma riaz
    Jul 27, 2011 - 9:48PM

    Definitely good neighbourly relations is the need of the hour and I wish this could happen. But, a big but that I feel stands in the way is that India is known to change course on and off when it is in it’s own interest. This time I am quite sure the reason behind such a lovely attitude towards Pakistan is that India wants a permanent seat in the Security Council. Afterall, just a few days back India vetoed something which puts a trade barrier on Pakistan with Europe, if I have got the continent right. I mean how come they are ready to discuss alll issues this time?

    Recommend

  • rock
    Jul 27, 2011 - 9:49PM

    @Dr Priyanka: Lucky, you are not in India. Indian media is more focussed on Hinaji’s fashion statement. Her handbag is worth of 17 lakh, her dressing style. They even discussed her College dressing style which includes jeans pants and stuff like that. We forgot she was here to discuss the foreign issues.

    Recommend

  • saeed
    Jul 27, 2011 - 9:49PM

    @Hafiz there are alot of things which are haram in islam and are openly happening in pakistan..you have only noticed this…hypocrate, what about looking at the women it is also haram so why are you looking at Miss Hina while she is shaking hands…and i it is haram you are no one to judge and dictate…

    Recommend

  • Somebody
    Jul 27, 2011 - 10:13PM

    @Thomas

    Unlike K-P and Baluchistan, Kashmir is a disputed territory, so your comment just shows the ignorance that you bear.

    Recommend

  • Yusaf
    Jul 27, 2011 - 10:23PM

    @Hairaan:
    I just love what you said.

    may Allah bless you

    Recommend

  • Yusaf
    Jul 27, 2011 - 10:25PM

    @woohoo:
    My friend, this comment is for someone who thinks and ponder over the world and everything around him/her.

    Recommend

  • Asif Butt
    Jul 27, 2011 - 10:30PM

    @ ALL FELLOW INDIAN NEIGHBORS

    We look forward to the day when we can all be friends in a brotherly manner , regardless of religion or creed.

    India is Pakistan’s cousin , and we want to befriend our cousins before befriending with any other nation or people.

    Waiting for those days ( hopefully in my life )…

    From the people of Pakistan.

    Recommend

  • Yusaf
    Jul 27, 2011 - 10:31PM

    @Habiba Younis:

    You make no sense. Dont comment if you cant comment something constructive

    Recommend

  • Yusaf
    Jul 27, 2011 - 10:34PM

    @Pashtun:

    A disgrace to Pathans

    Recommend

  • Rashid
    Jul 27, 2011 - 10:50PM

    Well, about shaking hands with members of opposite sex, it has nothing to do with an organization, or Tableeghi-Jamaat. Even if you see this from from cultural viewpoint, I don’t think not shaking hands is problematic. People from West, and in East, both widely understand that it is not common among practicing Muslims to shake hands with members of opposite gender, and both men and women, who are not Muslims, respect this; at least, at the time of meeting. And at many occasions, people from West would not even extend their hands to Muslims members of opposite sex, but instead, would just nod respectfully as a gesture, and smile. So, this matter is not as tricky as it is made.

    However, the problem is ours. If our representatives go while observing what is called “Hijaab” in Islamic Law, I am sure they would not face any problem in not shaking hands; people know how to respect others’ views. Now that we do not choose to do so, we shake hands by our will. It is as simple as that.

    Recommend

  • My Name is Khan
    Jul 27, 2011 - 11:59PM

    To all of those who forget they are Pakistani before they are a religion, just be careful what you ask for. Pakistan will disintegrate if we forget that we have to be a nation first.

    Recommend

  • Salman
    Jul 28, 2011 - 12:13AM

    @yousuf khan:

    Correct in saying that we should put our house in order first, wrong in saying we are obsessed with india, open your eyes, there are real threats from india and USA which cannot be ignored!

    And we are Muslims first! Then Pakistani! And yes not ethnicity we should be one!

    Recommend

  • Hairaan
    Jul 28, 2011 - 12:59AM

    @Pashtun:
    Dear brother, Allah (SWT) in Surah Hujraat Ayat # 13 says:

    O mankind, We have created you from a male and a female,
    and made you into races and tribes, so that you may identify
    one another. Surely the noblest of you, in Allah’s sight, is the one
    who is most pious of you. Surely Allah is All-Knowing, All-Aware.

    So the ethnic background is not something to be proud of or to fight upon. You must have read the comments of others as well and must have noticed that there is no limit to the polarization in the society if we ignore the religion. Some of the commentators believe they are Pakistani first, you say you are Pushtun, others would say Punjabi, Sindhi and so on…….

    May Allah guide us all to the right path.

    Recommend

  • Nirvan
    Jul 28, 2011 - 1:35AM

    Folks, I am glad to see a new face from Pakistan in that she is younger and has grown up after the 1971 war. The curse of our South and Central Asiatic region is terrorism. Our religious beliefs are personal. Ultimately when we die, we will meet our maker. He will be devasted that we have killed, maimed and orphaned in his name.
    It is natural & easier to do good, and unnatural to do evil deeds.
    Imagine if Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Nepal, an autonomous Kashmir (that is landlocked)
    can negotiate a peace and a prosperity agenda. What do we want for our children and grandchildren and then walk backwards to what must be done now.

    Recommend

  • Jul 28, 2011 - 1:43AM

    @Dr. Saleem Siddiqi:
    Sorry! we Indians don’t have to read between the lines or what is written on the walls. Fursat nahin hai itni! You have enough time, so you do it. We Indians are busy rebuilding our empire and our economy. And we are not paranoid that we will look around the corner. We are very open minded people and my advise to you would be to reflect upon and do some soul searching and introspection. We are very patient and at the same time tough nuts to crack. Remember in the past when we had nothing we had guts and now that we are doing well and our economy is booming we still have guts. The only problem is the poor man has to benefit. That’s the main issue and any amount of threats and sabre rattling from outside or inside will not frighten or deter us.

    Recommend

  • Khan
    Jul 28, 2011 - 3:00AM

    @Realist:

    God comes first but whose version? Everybody thinks they are doing God’s bidding so they start killing people who disagree with them. Let’s just leave at it this: let people believe what they want, what does it matter to you? And no matter what, violence MUST be stopped against any people, regardless of religion. Unless you are willing to agree to these points, you will continue to live in the dark ages and the world will continue to look at you with suspicion and hate, not love and mercy, which is what true Islam is all about.

    Recommend

  • Khan
    Jul 28, 2011 - 3:02AM

    @Hairaan: It is not a matter of what we are “first” or “second.” We are humans first. Get over your hatred of people who disagree with you.

    Recommend

  • Khan
    Jul 28, 2011 - 3:03AM

    @malik:
    Awesome, love it!

    Recommend

  • Khan
    Jul 28, 2011 - 3:06AM

    All this talk of we are Pakistani first, Muslim second is nauseating. Does the rest of the “Muslim” world care? They have exported their ideology of hate into your country and are now using you to fight their own pathetic wars. Yes, I speak of the Arabs. And you are here crying about being more Arab than the Arabs. Worry about your own demise, don’t think that the person you are speaking to is worse than you but that they are better than you. Then you will never judge another human unkindly. The Hindu beggar on the street may be closer to God than you and you will be asked about him. If you utter a word of hate then you are not a Musliim but a hate-mongerer.

    On an unrelated note, Ms. Khar is a great appointment by the idiotic Zardari. She might just work out.

    Recommend

  • Jul 28, 2011 - 4:28AM

    I am very happy to see this positive development between the two countries. I hope seeing a woman in this role in Pakistan will challenge some stereotypes in the West about Muslim majority countries. Peace and blessings to Pakistan and India. :)

    Recommend

  • T Khan
    Jul 28, 2011 - 5:35AM

    @Realist:

    Allah has stated very clearly in Quran that anyone living in any country is bound to obey the laws of the land, unless they come in direct clash with the word of Allah ( not the word of Mullah). A man’s love for his country is a natural phenomenon and it is not confined by religion and neither does Allah confine it. Islam is a much more pragmatic religion than what we have made it. Talking or thinking about correcting ourselves before blaming others for the sake of our country is the right and just thing to do.
    Let us not put our own prejudices forward and justify them by calling upon Allah and religion. My religion is the religion of Allah, the Merciful, Forgiving and As-Salam (The Source of Peace and Safety).

    Recommend

  • AnisAqeel
    Jul 28, 2011 - 6:16AM

    @Dr Priyanka:
    So you believe Qureshi was taking his own decisions and Ms Rabbani can’t. No foreign minister takes their own policy-making decisions and the moment anyone does, is out like Qureshi.

    Recommend

  • Thomas
    Jul 28, 2011 - 7:42AM

    @Somebody:

    The Pakistani actions in the past gives India every right to influence, entertain and offer all kind of help (ha ha Moral support)! they need, may it be for Baloch seperaists and all other seperatists in Pakistan. What goes around comes around. Don’t play high and holy. What you do will be done to you, my friend.

    Recommend

  • M. A. Changezi
    Jul 28, 2011 - 8:03AM

    More power to them for trying to bring peace in this war/conflict torn part of the world. By the way, it did look like a fashion week to me. :)

    Recommend

  • AnisAqeel
    Jul 28, 2011 - 8:56AM

    @yousuf khan:
    Very true and I agree 100% with you. Islam is being twisted so badly that another kind of Islam has taken place. This is teaching of Islam that your country comes first even if followers of other religions are ruling Muslims unless rulers prohibit you to practice your religion. An American, Israeli or Indian Muslim solder is as much ‘shaheed’ fighting and dying for his country as a Muslim solder fighting and dying for an Islamic state.
    Our mullahs who are lost from the path for revenge, greed or being ‘drunk’ with fanaticism will never agree, as it has become their bread and butter.
    Pakistan first and then Islam; Pakistan consists of every Pakistani no matter what religion they belong to and don’t forget white portion in our national flag.

    Recommend

  • Pashtun
    Jul 28, 2011 - 9:20AM

    @Yousaf I am not a Pathan so no question of disgrace.Pashtun are called Pathans only by Indians or some people of Punjab.Which part of India are you from?I am a Pashtun.

    Recommend

  • Jul 28, 2011 - 9:22AM

    @Dr Priyanka:
    Thanks for your rejoinder and I am pleased to know that you Indians dont have time to see what is happening in India.
    You dont have to see that India is the largest slump factory in the whole of world. Jhopar Patti which was limited to Mumbai and Kolkotta is now spreading fast to various other cities of India due to high poverty level.

    I am glad that you do not have time to see various Ghotalaas such as Bofors Ghotala, Charu Ghotala, 2G Ghotala and various other Ghotalaas in the offing.

    We are glad that Indian Politicians and Rulers are getting richer and richer and poorer more poorer and you do not have time to see.

    I will just quote one example of how much black money Sonia Gandhi has accumulated:

    Sonia Gandhi has $18.66 billion in Swiss Bank accounts
    By Infinity Times
    – June 6, 2011Posted in: India, Politics

    UPA Chairperson and the President of All India Congress Committee “Sonia Gandhi” has around $9.41 billion (Rs 42,345 crore) to $18.66 billion (Rs 83,900 crore)in Swiss Bank accounts, according to the article on Wikipedia.

    According to the article, Swiss magazine Schweizer Illustrierte on 11 November 1991 revealed that Sonia Gandhi was controlling secret Swiss Bank accounts worth $2.2 billion (Rs 10,000 crore).

    If these are reports are true then India is in bigger trouble, you might have ever imagined. As, there are so many Indian politicians who are supposed to have bank accounts in Swiss Bank.

    Even if 20% of them are having bank accounts, still there would be billions of dollars of India rotting in Swiss Bank.

    http://infinitytimes.com/news/2011/06/06/12:46/wikipedia-says-sonia-gandhi-has-1866-billion-in-sw-n204-html/ .

    So I am glad that educated people like you are sleeping and having day dreaming and believing on cooked up progress figures as supplied by Indian Government.

    I am sure with this progress, India’s future is very bright – congratulations.

    Dr. Saleem Siddiqi

    Johannesburg – South Africa.

    Recommend

  • vasan
    Jul 28, 2011 - 9:44AM

    Asif Butt: Good on you mate, Wish there are more Pakistanis and Indians like you.

    Recommend

  • FactCheck
    Jul 28, 2011 - 9:48AM

    @Thomas:

    You are absolutely correct and add the statement to the media “we have a stated position on Kashmir”. Another non-starter. As SMK said, we have agreed to continue the dialogue for the sake of dialogue. Recommend

  • FactCheck
    Jul 28, 2011 - 10:02AM

    @asma riaz:

    Pakistan is not force in the UN, it is one among many and Pakistan will never, ever support India for Security Coiuncil Permanent Membership, and India is not bothered by it. Don’t delude yourself.

    Instead , you should be thinking about the Economic benefit Pakistan will achieve. India and other SARC nations are building transportation links with East Asian Countries (Burma, Thailand, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia…), etc. How are you going to get to these markets? All are growing economies compared to all in Central Asia, these are the real issues all of you should be thinking about to improve life in Pakistan and not some absurdity like religion and India is out destroy us. Ask yourselves, how is that India seem to have cordial relations with every country in the world including ones in its neighborhood except Pakistan? If you have the courage to answer the question honestly and truthfully, you will figure out the reason, if not, everything anyone says to you in this reagard will be exactly like, “trying to expalin the sea to a frog in a well or like trying to explain ice to a grass hooper” – Tsung Tzu.Recommend

  • Asim
    Jul 28, 2011 - 10:27AM

    @Hafiz:
    Yes you are right man

    Recommend

  • R S JOHAR
    Jul 28, 2011 - 10:48AM

    @Asif Butt:
    I fully appreciate your gesture and hope more Pakistanis follow the same mindset like your good-self. We were one nation once but divided by destiny therefore your suggestion to maintain brotherly relations is entirely appropriate and also needs to be commended. There are other Pakistanis ie Dr Mirza, My name is Khan who write very balanced comments which are not only appreciated by me but by many other Indians as well.

    Recommend

  • Hiran
    Jul 28, 2011 - 10:59AM

    @Tony Singh – this mentality that there would be no accountability after death is exactlty the casue of all world problems with people looting other people with their lives, money, respect and everything, if this spirit of answering to the HIGHEST authority, the CREATOR is intact, there would be no world troubles as you see today. What you are saying totally contradicts to what you wish should for: a perfect world which could only be achieved if every one and each one has a faith that one day i will be answerable for my wrong doings, just think for awhile leaving aside the hatred for religions.

    Recommend

  • kazi jawed akhter
    Jul 28, 2011 - 11:09AM

    We must not get intoxicated by this fairy tale like situation prevailing in both the countries.Only single administrative order can reverse the process.Let us hope and pray for the best in the interest of both the countries.God bless everybody.Aamin

    Recommend

  • Realist
    Jul 28, 2011 - 11:15AM

    @Palvasha von Hassell:

    Sorry to break your bubble but no, under no circumstance a woman or a man is allowed to shake hands with a non mahram. Bring proof before you pass such sweeping statements that for the sake of diplomacy, we can lay aside the clear cut rules of beahviour told to us in Quran and Sunnah.

    Recommend

  • Realist
    Jul 28, 2011 - 11:19AM

    @waqas:

    Well, to be fair, I always advise Muslims living in France or somewhere else to live like they tell you to live since hey, it is indeed their country. And yes, if putting Allah (SWT) before everything else is barbaric, I am proud to be a barbarian rather than an ignorant educated english speaking elite like you.

    Recommend

  • ik
    Jul 28, 2011 - 11:29AM

    Surely A New Era in Indo-Pak relationship – The new era is the new generation which avoids disputes & encourages people to people contact by destroying borders that separate them

    Recommend

  • Frank
    Jul 28, 2011 - 12:54PM

    ik

    The new era is the new generation
    which avoids disputes & encourages
    people to people contact by destroying
    borders that separate them

    There you go again. We are building the most rapidly expanding nuclear arsenal in the world to destroy anyone who attempts to destroy that border. You people are incorrigible. Anyone with a half brain can see peace with India is impossible.

    Recommend

  • Uza Syed
    Jul 28, 2011 - 12:56PM

    @Dr. Saleem Siddiqi: One would hope that Pakistan learnt a lesson in realism. Do you wish Pakistan to provide India another opportunity for ‘action replay’ and solve our problems on the same pattern that you referred?

    Recommend

  • Javed
    Jul 28, 2011 - 12:59PM

    @Asadullah: Yes I agree that most of us Pakistanis believe that we are Muslim first and Pakistani second. That is the reason why we have always sacrificed Pakistan for flimsy and utopian ideas and then are surprised why Pakistan is in such a mess. Have you ever wondered why we needed a country in the first place as we would have been Muslims where ever we lived anyway? I strongly recommend GROWING UP.
    PS: We want Kashmiris to join a country which is a second option for its own citizens.

    Recommend

  • mahesh
    Jul 28, 2011 - 1:06PM

    @Palvasha von Hassell:
    well said von Hassell...

    Recommend

  • D. Ghose
    Jul 28, 2011 - 1:29PM

    1) A look into long-term history shows that every territory is or can be disputed territory.

    2) Muslim lands are all formerly non-muslim lands – so they are all disputed territories.

    3) Muslims have been committing a non-stop demographic and territorial infiltration or aggression or take-over into non-muslim lands since 1400 years. From many of these lands the non-muslims have been de facto exterminated.

    4) About life before death we know a lot (though not everything) with certainty. About life after death we have only ideas, speculations, wishful thoughts and (often very conflicting) beliefs. So better concentrate on being honest, non-violent, humble and open-minded in the life before death.

    5) Overpopulation is the root cause of many problems today. Those who have produced too many children (more than two per couple) are to be held responsible for the many problems. Muslims have behaved especially irresponsibly in this matter.

    Recommend

  • Palvasha von Hassell
    Jul 28, 2011 - 1:48PM

    @Realist: Live up to your name, will you?

    According to a fatwa by Muhammad al-Hanooti, shaking hands with Muslim women is not a halal, or permissible style of greeting. However; the fatwa also states that we cannot say it is haram, or impermissible because the hadith, the sayings and traditions of the Prophet, narrated for prohibition are weak. It is makrooh, or disliked, which means it’s better for a Muslim not to perform it unless the situation prefers doing so.

    Recommend

  • kamal
    Jul 28, 2011 - 2:25PM

    there is one good thing about 1.25L rupees bag…you can guarantee there is no explosive inside it.

    Recommend

  • P N Eswaran
    Jul 28, 2011 - 2:47PM

    @USMAN:
    We Indians are gratified that Krishna read from the right speech. He generally speaks form what ever he finds before his eyes.

    Recommend

  • Patrick
    Jul 28, 2011 - 3:00PM

    @Hairaan:
    No The first(and only) question you will be asked is ‘Have you been a good human being?’
    If you have been a thoroughly nasty person, just saying you are a muslim will not be enough!

    Recommend

  • M.REHAN BEHLEEM
    Jul 28, 2011 - 3:14PM

    First question is going to be asked will be about NAMAZ

    Recommend

  • Manit Parmar
    Jul 28, 2011 - 3:16PM

    @Hairaan:

    Really? Have you experienced death or are you blindly following what your elders are saying or written in books? I think if at all any question is asked, it should be “Have you been a good human being?”. Please tell me if they ask about religion then let me prepare myself to rebuttal them because then what is the difference between what happens here and what happens up there.

    Recommend

  • Indian
    Jul 28, 2011 - 3:47PM

    @Dr. Saleem Siddiqi: because you were killing Hindus indiscriminately , thats why India intervened

    Recommend

  • Tony Singh
    Jul 28, 2011 - 4:00PM

    @Hairaan:
    Hard truth is there is only one life. Enjoy it and let others enjoy it. See it as it is. Great men have said – Those who know all, know, there is nothing to know (plainly speaking – there is no “other world” or other life)Recommend

  • observer
    Jul 28, 2011 - 5:14PM

    @Realist

    Well, to be fair, I always advise Muslims living in France or somewhere else to live like they tell you to live since hey, it is indeed their country.

    My brother had you been around a little earlier, Partition would not have taken place, as you would surely have seen that India was a non-muslim country. I am sure you would have advised others to go back to Arabia, Persia, ME or Afghanistan, whereever they had come from.Do think over it.

    Recommend

  • abhi
    Jul 28, 2011 - 5:21PM

    @Hairaan
    Will this question be asked in Arabic, Persian or in Urdu? Also what is the expected answer here?
    Are you sure The Creator need to ask you about your religion or he/she will know it already. I think having a Pakistani passport will help, God can easily look up the religion column there.

    Recommend

  • Realist
    Jul 28, 2011 - 5:56PM

    @Palvasha von Hassell:

    Well, here is the reply

    http://www.islamswomen.com/qa/question.php?qid=1146

    You will note that one of the Ahadith mentioned is in both Sahih Muslim and Sahih Bukhari and all Muslim Fiqhs (except Shias of course) consider them authentic. The Prophet (PBUH) never held hands of non-mahram women even while taking pledges. Taking the pledge of becoming a Muslim is far more important than mere diplomacy.

    Recommend

  • Faraz
    Jul 28, 2011 - 6:10PM

    right girl, wrong party!

    Recommend

  • Jul 28, 2011 - 6:13PM

    We the people of both the countries need to see the positive outcome of these dialogues. We need the concrete steps from both the countries to eradicate cross boarder terrorism. We must also want to know how much powers both the FMs are having to transform their words into action. Hina has repeatedly said in her speech she came to India with mindset. What is mindset if she is talking about the good relationships between both the countries then both the countries politicians must be sincere with their own citizens.

    It was the practice of British Rulers in India “divide and rule”. Since the very day of post India and Pakistan both the countries are playing with the sentiments of their people. They always try to hide their weaknesses and play blame game against each other. It is very easy to say a job and it is very difficult to do a job.

    Recommend

  • Abbas
    Jul 28, 2011 - 7:28PM

    @Realist: If God comes first for you congratulations! Keep that though to yourself. You don’t need to impose God on the rest of us.

    We all need to respect everyone for whatever their beliefs and live as human beings.

    Recommend

  • Asad
    Jul 28, 2011 - 8:15PM

    Muslim First!!! Islam Comes First!! ALLAH (swt) comes first and foremost. Pakistan was a country made to Practice ISLAM! Unfortunately people have chosen secular rulers in the last 64 years(Democratic or military) and we are in this mess today.

    Recommend

  • Pashtun
    Jul 28, 2011 - 9:53PM

    @Hairan If my dead body is asked this question that “What is your Religion”?My answer is gonna be”If you do not know this basic fact about me,please send someone who is really involved in the administration of running of this universe”.

    Recommend

  • Tanoli
    Jul 28, 2011 - 10:16PM

    @ pashtun
    i am a muslim first and pakhtoon after and i think u dont have a much islam
    knowledge please go and read your mazhab.

    Recommend

  • Hairaan
    Jul 28, 2011 - 11:33PM

    @M.REHAN BEHLEEM:
    Dear brother thanks for calling my attention to the sequense of the questions. The following is the correct order for the sake of information:

    Who is your Lord?
    Who is your Prophet?
    What is your religion?

    Questions regarding the Namaz and other obligations will be asked after these.

    Jazakalla

    Recommend

  • Hairaan
    Jul 28, 2011 - 11:39PM

    @Patrick:

    If you have been a thoroughly nasty person, just saying you are a muslim will not be enough!

    You are very right. A true Muslim is not supposed to be nasty at all.

    Recommend

  • Hairaan
    Jul 28, 2011 - 11:57PM

    @AnisAqeel:
    When we say Islam first, does not mean that we hate other religions and people following these religions. What this really means is that we consider Islam to be our primary source of guidance. Contrary to what you understood, Islam requires its followers to live peacefully with fellow citizens irrespective of their religion. Our prophet said that if a Muslim kills a non-muslim who is living peacefully in a Muslim country, will not even smell the scent of the paradise.

    A Muslim is supposed to be highly loyal to his/her country even he.she is living in a non-Muslim country. Loving Islam does not mean hating the country you are living in. We need to keep our concepts clear. Quran requires Muslims to obey God, his Messenger and the state functionaries and authorities (that is the country and its government). However, if the country asks you something which is contrary to the teachings of Islam you can refuse to obey.

    Recommend

  • Realist
    Jul 29, 2011 - 11:05AM

    @Abbas:

    Well, sorry but you need to wake up. Ask in the streets instead of in the comments section of an English daily and you will soon find out that it is you who is in the minority and it is you who is trying to impose your secular ideas of separation of state and religion. Majority of us Pakistanis are happy and comfortable to be Muslims first and everything else later.

    Recommend

  • Jul 29, 2011 - 11:37AM

    During her speech she told she came to India with mindset. Is there anybody else who can ask her what mindset.

    If both the countries are sincere with their people and need to work together to eradicate terrorism, to do trade and public to public contacts. Our FM must send a request to her counterpart in India:-

    Give visa relaxation to the visitors.
    Give visa relaxation to the business people from both sides.
    India must resume Air India services for Mumbai / Delhi
    The cricket series must be started in neutral venue
    Recommend

  • Tony Singh
    Jul 29, 2011 - 1:18PM

    @Hiran:
    And how exactly? Take a look around the world
    1. Israel = Palestinian issue (Jewish religion vs rest of Abrahaminic religions)
    2. India – Pak split (Jinnah’s perception of Hindu = Muslim divide)
    3. Srilankan conflict (Buddhist Singalese – Hindu/Muslim/Christian tamilians)
    4. Shia Vs Sunnis. Ahmedis Vs Other muslims
    and on and on…
    And for what?

    Recommend

  • AnisAqeel
    Jul 29, 2011 - 6:42PM

    @Hairaan:
    Thank you for endorsing what I said. In addition you are saying ‘does not mean that we hate other religions and people”.
    My question is, if it is Islam what majority of hates monger mullahs are inducing to innocent or ignorant people and completely distorting teachings of Islam? Tell me how many were killed in Bombay, Ahmadies in Lahore, Christians in their churches, Taseer and Bhatti just to advocate real spirit of Islam. ‘One innocent person killed, whole humanity is killed’ there is no Islam in Pakistan; there are wolves in the clothes of Muslims. If you honestly want to see Islam, go to Western countries and USA where Muslims besides being in a very small minority are better Muslims and treated according to Islamic values.Recommend

More in Pakistan