Stories about India-Pakistan relations

Why the creation of Pakistan does not negate my Indian identity

There is something about India as an idea which transcends modern-day political configurations. It is the idea of India as a huge mass of land which stretches from Balochistan to present day Bangladesh. This idea of India is independent of any political configuration. In fact, during the past thousands of years, this mass of land has very seldom been a unified political entity. And yet, there is something which loosely unites the inhabitants despite their substantial religious and at times even ethno-linguistic differences. After all, let us not forget that more than 200 languages are spoken in India. There is something, perhaps ...

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Dear Paresh Rawal, “you can change friends, but not neighbours”. Love, Pakistan

Dear Paresh Rawal, Writing this letter to you was difficult since I did not know where to begin, and I feel that the rapidly changing dynamics of India-Pakistan relations and this letter are quite similar in this regard. However, let us focus on the reason why I have written this letter before we get on to the seesaw that our countries have been riding over the last seven decades. Hera Pheri was your first movie I watched in my childhood, and believe me when I say it still triggers fits of laughter every single time I watch it. Babu bhaiya has thousands of fans in your ...

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The conundrum that is Hafiz Saeed

Is Pakistan trying to assert itself against non-state actors by putting Hafiz Saeed under house arrest? Is this what the government in Islamabad wants the world to believe? Whatever the case may be, the timing of Saeed’s house arrest questions the government’s assertion. Media reports both in Pakistan and outside feel that the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) regime in Islamabad acted either under the influence and fear of the new ruler in Washington or it buckled under Beijing’s pressure. #BREAKING: Terrorist Hafiz Saeed releases video after he was put in house arrest, claims Modi-Trump friendship led to action against him. pic.twitter.com/V5qYI4FTWC — ...

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What is India trying to prove with its Cold Start?

Recently, despite countless refutes, the curtain over the Indian Cold Start doctrine has finally been raised. In an interview on January 4th, soon after his appointment, the Indian Army Commander-in-Chief General Bipin Rawat raised a new conflagration in the strategic community of India and around the world by officially acknowledging India’s conventional military operations targeted towards Pakistan. For those of you who are unaware, the Cold Start is a military doctrine developed by the Indian Army for use in a possible war with Pakistan. It is intended to allow India’s conventional forces to perform holding attacks in order to prevent a nuclear ...

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Chaiwala pe charcha in India

Irony just died a few deaths. At a time when Indian women and their aunts are wondering whether or not to publically lament the ‘ghar wapsi’ of the original heart throb Fawad Khan, another man has caught their fickle fancy. And as the crow flies or rather the Sada-e- Sarhad bus plies, he couldn’t be geographically closer but those miles today are politically insurmountable. An Indian friend married to a Pakistani once told me, the Pakhtun shopkeepers are finer than the work on the famous Afghan carpets they sell. Now I know what she means, as do most of the ...

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Will Chabahar Port reap greater benefits than Gwadar Port?

A whiff of competition is in the air. It is swirling through every nook and cranny and drawing battle lines in its wake. The buzzword on the tip of everyone’s tongue is Chabahar Port, the distant and impoverished cousin of Gwadar Port. The frightening mix of antagonism and optimism has paved the way for increased polarisation. At this stage, our vision of both projects and their intentions have been blinkered. Sceptics believe the long-awaited trilateral agreement among Iran, Afghanistan and India to develop Chabahar Port poses a threat to efforts to boost the untapped potential of Gwadar Port. On the other ...

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Donald Trump vs Sadiq Khan: Who is the better leader?

In a momentous blow to Donald Trump’s divisive tactics and fear-mongering, London elected their first Muslim mayor, Mr Sadiq Khan. Mr Khan, of Pakistani descent, was born and brought up in London and won the election despite being harangued as a terrorist sympathiser by Zac Goldsmith, his opponent and David Cameron. Although those allegations didn’t stick, his election shows that the people of London were able to look past his ethnicity and faith, and instead rely on his sound policies, like dealing with the on-going housing crisis that plagues London. Trump, on the other hand, seems to be gaining popularity in the American primaries by isolating different ethnicities ...

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How safe will Pakistan’s cricket team be in India?

Since the dawn of modern time, sports have been weaved diligently into the diplomatic affairs of a state and seen as a means to bridge gaps between chasms of differences. Not only does it do the aforementioned, but the message of goodwill that sporting events propagate has helped to bolster communal relations between states in a way that surpasses all differences of culture, ethnicity and religion. Sports can bring hostile nations together and help to temporarily stave off the plethora of discrepancies that might spark out in battlefields. For this very reason, sport diplomacy is amongst one of the very ...

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China’s WW2 parade has attached more shame onto humanity’s shoulders

Wars may be designed to destroy nations; however, they play a critical role in building them as well. Is that what China has attempted to do today? China’s commemoration of the Second World War took place today in the city of Beijing. India too, is planning a festival to memorialise the 1965 war with Pakistan. 2015 seems to be the year we’re all celebrating war. China put on a grand display of its military strength and laid bare its hegemonic ambitions in the Asian region. The Chinese administration has asserted that the intention of the parade is to remind the world of the sacrifices the Chinese people ...

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Who asked Imran Khan to address the LoC shelling?

Have you heard? There are rumours of Mr Shahid Khan Afridi poised to be the next Imran Khan. While I leave this rumoured information to be processed by cricket fans and political analysts at length, one has to question what the nation is to do with the current Imran Khan that we do have. What happens when cricketers decide that they’d be much better at life if they gave up what they had been doing all their lives, and start on a completely new career path? The result is that they’re neither good cricketers nor are they good statesmen/politicians. I am, ...

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