Islamabad Politics Report/Moazzam Raza Tabassam: Pakistan and India have agreed to revive Track II diplomacy in order to improve their relations, according to Indian media.
The peaceful resolution of India-Pakistan disputes, including the core issue of Kashmir, can be found through comprehensive and meaningful dialogue, Pakistan’s Army chief Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa said during his speech at the passing-out parade of cadets at the Pakistan Military Academy in Kakul in mid of April.
According to a report published in Indian leading newspaper, India has revived the original Track II initiative, Neemrana Dialogue, with Pakistan with a high-powered delegation travelling to Pakistan, which included former Indian diplomats, military veterans and academics.
The delegation is travelling to Pakistan to discuss ways to improve Pak-India relationship.
The delegation was headed by former MEA secretary and Pakistan expert Vivek Katju. J S Rajput, former NCERT head, was also part of the delegation. The talks took place from April 28 to 30. Pakistan was represented by former foreign secretary Inamul Haque and Ishrat Hussain among others.
While like other track II mechanisms, Neemrana is also a non-governmental dialogue, it is different from others in that both foreign ministries have in the past associated themselves with it.
“There have been other track II initiatives but these were mostly funded by third parties. Neemrana had more India-Pakistan character,” said former Indian high commissioner to Pakistan T C A Raghavan.
Former foreign secretary Kanwal Sibal, who is a member of the Neemrana group, chose not to visit Pakistan for the dialogue. He, however, said that Neemrana was an important initiative which had even survived some very difficult times in the relationship.
“Neemrana has had a tough time over the past few years. Both sides felt though that it was important to keep alive that tradition but I didn’t go because I don’t think it would yield significant results in the current circumstances,” said Sibal.