Rama Krishna Sangem
Pakistan Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari who came to India to participate in SCO (Shanghai Cooperation Organization) ministerial meeting at Goa on May 4, 5, has repeated almost repeated his country’s stand on everything – from terrorism to Kashmir issue. :I, myself, a victim of terrorism (implying his mother Benazir Bhutto‘s assassination)” is the only new thing he can add.
Bilawal, in his widely watched exclusive interview to India Today TV channel’s consulting editor Rajdeep Sardesai on May 5, Friday, offered to vacate Pakistan Occupied Kashmir if India too is ready to do the same, as per a UN security council resolution 70 years ago. When asked about “frozen peace” between India and Pakistan, Bilawal said: “This is due to unilateral action by India on August 5, 2019 (abrogation of Article 370)”.
No handshakes, no smiles
As expected, there were no handshakes nor smiles between Bilawal and India’s External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar at the SCO conclusion meeting. They formally greeted each other with a Namasthe and moved on. Unlike with Russia foreign minister Sergey Lavrov and China foreign minister Qin Gang, Jaishankar hasn’t met with Bilawal one-on one during the meeting.
So, there was this unmistakable air of unease or distrust between India and Pakistan. Bilawal seems to have raised India holing G-20 ministerial meeting in Srinagar, capital of Kashmir. For this, Jaishankar strongly replied saying Pakistan has nothing to do with neither G-20 nor Kashmir. “If at anything Pakistan has to do with, it is vacating Pakistan Occupied Kashmir and hand it over to India, and when”. said Jaishankar.
Even in Rajdeep’s interview, Bilawal evaded some issues like the fate of minorities, especially fast decreased population of Hindus in Pakistan over the decades. He simply muttered his commitment to interests of minorities anywhere. Bilawal Bhutto blamed India for unrest in his country’s Baluchistan and for some terror incidents in Pakistan. “Whenever elections are held in India, Pakistan plays a role,” said Bilawal, a usual refrain from most Pakistan leaders.