Corridor of Uncertainty
Mains Paper 5: International Relations
Prelims level: Kartarpur corridor
Mains level: India and its neighbourhood relations.
- It’s surprising that the opening of the corridor is being compared
to the fall of the Berlin Wall.
- Nothing much will change unless tension along the international
border is reduced.
- It is being claimed that India has been caught unprepared by
Pakistan’s decision to open the corridor.
- However, the opening of the corridor is not a window of
opportunity for a meaningful resumption of the stalled peace process and
change in India’s Pakistan policy.
Analysing the situation
- The Indian exercise seems designed to appease domestic audiences,
primarily in Sikh-dominated Punjab.
- India’s emergence as an economic and regional powerhouse has led
to a debate in Pakistan on whether to persist with an irredentist attitude
or take advantage of its neighbour’s rise.
- The Pakistan PM seems to be aware that “Naya Pakistan” cannot be
founded on the bizarre notion of “eating grass” to seek parity with India.
- However, the harping of the Kashmir issue in the ceremony to
re-open the Kartarpur corridor leaves nobody in doubt.
- Pakistan’s policies towards Kashmir remain under the firm grip of
its military intelligence establishment.
- It created safe havens and training zones for militant groups and
alienated youths to force India into a dialogue on Kashmir.
- After the restoration of democracy in Pakistan, civilian
governments of different shades adopted somewhat conciliatory approaches of
engaging India diplomatically in order to address other disputes.
- In the past three decades, the peace process has seen many ups and
downs, with India sometimes going the extra mile to reassure Pakistan.
- But such reassurances and efforts at conciliation —haven’t led to
any qualitative difference in Pakistan’s stance.
- Why another flip-flop on the Kartarpur corridor when the Narendra
Modi government has already done so many, the latest being in September on
the issue of talks between the foreign ministers of the two nations?
- The Modi government has to ensure that India’s major agenda, the
punishment of the perpetrators of 26/11, is not sidelined in the hype of “a
new beginning” with Pakistan.
- At the same time, the BJP can’t afford to be seen denying the Sikh
community an opportunity to mark Guru Nanak’s 550th birth anniversary when
Pakistan is willing to roll out a red carpet.
- Despite obsessing about Pakistan, India has strategically much
more to think about.
- This allows the Modi government the freedom to remain
non-reciprocal to Khan’s tactical pleadings of a dialogue.
Q.1) Pakistan has decided to build Kartarpur Corridor in Nankana Sahib.
The corridor will provide visa-free access to the Indian _________ pilgrims to
Q.1) Why another flip-flop on the Kartarpur corridor when the Narendra
Modi government has already done so many, the latest being in September on the
issue of talks between the foreign ministers of the two nations?