“There is no solution to Kashmir; If Pakistan were to concede 1 acre of land of Kashmir to India the government will fall within 6 hours, if we were to concede one 1 acre of land to Pakistan the government will fall within 6 hours so the answer is to let the status quo continue” said K Natwar Singh, Former External Affairs Minister of India. He was speaking at the release of the book ‘Beyond Pulwama and Balakot’ written by Dr. U. V. Singh. The book release took place at the New Delhi’s India Habitat Center. Singh described India- Pakistan relations as ‘accident prone’ something which can deteriorate very fast even because of a small incident.
He felt that Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan has made all the right noises regarding India-Pakistan relations but he has his limitations “Prime Minister Imran Khan, broadly speaking his statements on India have been sensible he is not overtly antagonistic but the PM knows his limitations and has to look over his shoulder to see whether his army bosses are in agreement with what is being done.”
Singh who has more than sixty years of experience in diplomacy working as a bureaucrat and then as a foreign minister felt that Pakistan as a nation suffers from chronic inferiority complex vis a vis India “Pakistan suffers from chronic inferiority complex towards India that’s why all this aggressive posturing, take the case of International Court of Justice(ICJ)’s ruling regarding Kulbhushan Jadhav the judgment was 15 to 1 in favour of India but Pakistan foreign minister described the judgment as favorable to Pakistan, they are not ready to concede anything in favour of India.”
He felt that Pakistan despite being economically stressed is unlikely to dismember “Pakistan would not disappear even if all factors are there for it to go, US and China would never allow Pakistan to disappear from the map they would continue to provide monetary and military help to them as they are doing presently. IMF has announced help and PM Imran Khan would ask US and China for economic relief as well.”
Singh who has authored several books on culture, history and international relations explained in detail the status and power the Pakistan army enjoys “After the death of Jinnah and Liaqat Ali Khan every government in Pakistan has been dependent for its survival on the army any major decisions which Pakistan takes has to have the approval of the Army. In the Pakistan army a Major lives like a Lieutenant General of the Indian Army. They have a foundation of retired Army officers which has investments in properties, farms, factories etc. If India Pakistan relations were to improve and become neighborly then people of Pakistan would ask why do we need such a large Army because after establishment of Bangladesh the defense requirement of Pakistan reduced 40% but the army has doubled since then.”
He felt that PM Modi is the only person who can possibly attempt a solution to Kashmir “Mr. Modi is in a very strong position both nationally as the opposition is in disarray and internationally too he is well respected so if there is anybody who can make a move with regard to Pakistan it is him but I don’t see him doing so anytime in the near future.”