If it’s only hands-shake, Bilawal may skip Goa

Bilawal Bhutto

Rama Krishna Sangem

Pakistan foreign minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari is under pressure to skip his visit to India to attend to SCO (Shanghai Cooperation Organisation)’s ministerial meeting at Goa on May 4, 5.  “If it is only for a hands shake, he (Bhutto) need not go to India,” says a section of media in Pakistan. However, Bilawal as of now, is coming to India for this meeting.

Pakistan has asked for a brief yet purposeful meeting with Indian foreign minister Dr S Jaishankar on the sidelines of Goa meeting. This meeting is expected to pave way for a summit level meeting of Pak PM Shebaz Sberif in New Delhi in July. Currently, India is the chair of SCO. Initially, India was open to this proposal, but after the recent Poonch terror attack on an army vehicle which claimed lives of five jawans, the situation changed.

India has communicated to Pakistan officials that no separate meeting between Jaishankar and Bilawal may not be possible at this stage. India believes that the Poonch attack was planned and executed by Jaish e Mumahmmad backed PAFF (People’s Anti-Fascist Force), a terror outfit, which also claimed responsibility to it. “Until and unless Pak stops its soil for terror attacks on India, a dialogue with any of its government functionaries is possible,” is our stand.


Pressure to go for video-conference

After India ruled out a separate meeting with Bilawal, there has been pressure on him to either stay away from SCO meeting or join it through video-conference. This is the general line of advice to him from both the opposition Imra Khan’s party as well as a section of media experts. “If it is just a hands-shake and some photo ops, there is no need to go all the way (to Goa),” is the line of some columnists.

Till April 28, Bilawal hasn’t changed his mind on going to Goa, but the absence of Pakistan Defence Minister Khawaja Mhammed Asif at  SCO defence ministers meeting in Delhi on April 27 and 28 supports the possibility of Bhutto Zardari’s skipping of the Goa event. India cut its relations with Pakistan after Uri attack in 206, while Pakistan downgraded ites ties with India after abrogation of Article 370 in 2019.

Rama Krishna Sangem

Ramakrishna chief editor of excel India online magazine and website

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Rama Krishna Sangem

Excel India national news magazine is a media startup founded and piloted by Rama Krishna Sangem, a Hyderabad based senior journalist with over three decade experience in the field of media, mostly in print journalism. His rich experience in reporting for both Telugu and English newspapers and heading a TV news channel and some online outfits will be of immense use to this venture. Excel India English news magazine seeks to fill the gap of analytical understanding to our readers who today are confronted with myriad media platforms. Our online version not only offers regular updates and commentary on happenings around us, but also gives larger stories not limited by space constraints of a print magazine. Excel India is ably run by a team of senior journalists committed to values and quality standards in the profession. We urge you all to support and guide us in this endeavour. Reach us at excelindiaweb123@gmail.com