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Cancellation of Pak-India Business Forum meeting

Cancellation of Pak-India Business Forum meeting

According to newspaper reports, the government has refused to participate in a proposed meeting of the Pak-Indian Business Forum in New Delhi for security reasons fearing that the high-profile business delegates from Islamabad could be targeted by Hindu extremist groups.

The Pakistani high commission in New Delhi has officially informed the Indian government about the postponement of the meeting, seeking a new date and new venue for the meeting. The three-day meeting of the business forum, which comprised 15 top businessmen from both countries, under the head of Nestle’s Syed Yawar Ali and Hero Moto Corporation’s Sunil Kant Munjal, was going to be held from November 30 to December 2. No doubt anti-Pakistan sentiments have been running high since the Bhartiya Janata Party government came to power in India. The Hindu extremist group Shiv Sena and other rightwing organizations have launched a smear campaign against Pakistani artistes and until the recent past, they protested against Pakistani cricket board chief who was on a visit to India to negotiate a cricket series between the two countries.

As a matter of fact, every Indian government came to power with an agenda of Pakistan bashing, but the BJP government, under Narendra Moody has crossed all limits of decency and international norms. The new Indian government has come to power on anti-Pakistan vote whereas the main issue, currently before the international community, is economy. The economic relations are more important than political relations and the current Indian government has failed to realize this simple fact. The business forum was set up in 2012 to enhance business and trade between Pakistan and India, covering all bilateral economic issues and the postponement of the meeting is a blow to the future economic relations between the two countries. The Pakistani high commission in New Delhi has rightly expressed his fear about the future outlook of the economic issues when he said that the economic relations are bound to hit snags perennially in an unpredictable

political environment in India. The Indian government has taken hardline stance on every single issue, making it difficult to make progress on any bilateral agenda, including economy and trade.

It is unfortunate that the Indian government has failed to understand the ground realities. Instead of resolving Kashmir issue, it has started fanning insurgency in Balochistan to keep Pakistan engaged on the domestic front and let loose a reign of terror in the occupied Kashmir. The governments in the world are heading toward economic integration, but India will never learn a lesson and is still living in the bitter past.