Pakistan, India were close to resolving Kashmir issue: Kasuri

Published: April 18, 2016
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PHOTO: REUTERS

PHOTO: REUTERS

ISLAMABAD: 

Pakistan and India were close to solving the Kashmir issue during the Musharraf regime, wrote former foreign minister Khursheed Mehmood Kasuri wrote in his book titled ‘Neither a Hawk nor a Dove’, which was unveiled on Sunday.

The book launching ceremony was attended, among others, by Air Marshal (retd) Asghar Khan, Gauhar Ayub, Wassem Sajjad, Anwar Baig, Naeemul Haq, General (retd) Talat Masood and a large number of diplomats, retired army officers and other prominent personalities. Sudheendra Kulkarni from India and Javed Ashraf Qazi, from Pakistan, attended the function as panelists and presented a number of suggestions for promoting Pakistan India ties.

The state of play in Pakistan-India relations

Speaking on the occasion, Kasuri said that his book encompassed the dialogue process for solving the Kashmir issue, adding that it continued during the entirety of the Musharraf regime.

He claimed that both countries had come close to solving the Kashmir issue, but despite all-out diplomatic efforts, they were unable to arrive at a satisfactory conclusion.

According to him, during president Pervez Musharraf’s Agra visit, a four-point agenda had been agreed upon. The points of mutual concurrence included gradual withdrawal of troops along the Line of Control (LoC), granting greater autonomy to the government in Kashmir, a method for joint Pakistan-India observation.

Summit communiqué: OIC urges India to resolve Kashmir dispute

Other points, he said, included opening up six routes for allowing free movement of the Kashmiris, turning the LoC into a neutral zone, adding that this suggestion also called for allowing Kashmiris free movement for at least 15 years, permitting them to decide what to do next.

Published in The Express Tribune, April 18th,  2016.

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Reader Comments (3)

  • Chacha Jee
    Apr 18, 2016 - 10:47AM

    I am witness to the events which Kasuri is talking about. I would say that it was Pakistan which may have been close to the closure of Kashmir issue but INDIA WAS NOT. You have all the newspaper available to you and a research could be made. India had a weak coalition Government under congress and UPA parties.There was no way that what Kasuri is saying could have passed indian parliament. Unlike Pakistan where once a decision is made by establishment and it is carried out, that kind of equation is not in india. Building a nationwide consu is not possible. Secondly, India’s defense budget is presently $40 billion and is likely to go to $100 billion in 20 years. It gives lot of jobs, manufacturing, R& D related infrastructure and don’t forget curuption dollars and clout. Pakistan had to literally beg for F16 planes, when it came to india, American told them to open manufacturing plant and make it india. So Kashmir problem is indirectly contributing to Indian GDP and Growth. The best jobs is USA are in defense manufacturing. As far Kashmir is concerned, it is problem in 4 muslim dominated districts. Whatever noise Kashmiri make that justifies India’s defense spending where all major countries get their share. Further, Kashmir location is stumbling block. World does not want to see another Afghanistan like landlocked country sandwiched between China and Pakistan and taking its birth out of Islamic jihad. Kashmiris more like will end up refugees in pakistan than see an independent country. It could be another Burma like situation. If Trump is President for next 8 years, there is no chance he will presume india on Kashmir.Recommend

  • Joe
    Apr 18, 2016 - 10:47AM

    India only needs to buy some time at that moment to stop cross border infiltration to build advanced fence fencing.Recommend

  • Prada
    Apr 18, 2016 - 3:32PM

    Any deviation from India’s stated stand would have brought Indians out on the streets in protest. Secretive talks can only go so far. India is not an autocratic state. Once the details came out, the people will react and nothing can happen without the people’s consent.Recommend

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