Friday, December 9, 2022

No point talking to Pakistan: Yashwant Sinha

New Delhi, Aug 23 (IANS) India should not engage with Pakistan unless it is “absolutely certain” about the outcome, former external affairs minister Yashwant Sinha said on Sunday.

“We should not engage with Pakistan unless you are absolutely certain of the outcome… I repeatedly tell (this to) my interlocutors with all my experience in dealing with Pakistan,” Sinha told CNN-IBN.

He said he had come to the conclusion that engagement with Pakistan leading to a positive result was just not possible.

The BJP leader said that not talking to Pakistan won’t lead to war. “The immediate consequence of not talking to Pakistan is not going to be a war with Pakistan. Certainly not a nuclear war.

“I hold the view that there is a big space between not talking and war. India and Pakistan can live in that space. The only problem is Pakistan indulges in cross border terrorism of which there is enough evidence.”

He also accused Pakistan of being in a state of denial.

“For everything Pakistan blames India. For every argument that we will advance, they will have a counter argument. For every dossier, they will have a counter dossier.

“So it is not possible to talk with Pakistan. Because Pakistan is in a constant state of denial and will not accept any allegation even that ‘jinda saboot’ our external affairs minister talked about,” Sinha said.

External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Saturday said Pakistan was running away from the talks as India had caught a Pakistani terrorist after the Udhampur terrror attack in Jammu and Kashmir.

Sinha said: “Pakistan has a habit of going back the next day on every written agreement that we arrive at.

“Pakistan misinterpreted the Shimla agreement, also ignored the January 2006 joint statement. They are misinterpreting Ufa, which clearly says NSA-level talks will be on all aspects of terrorism. I’m entirely with the government.”

The NSA-level talks between India and Pakistan were called off on Saturday as Islamabad insisted it will take up the “core” issue of Kashmir. India said Islamabad must abide by the agenda agreed to at Ufa, Russia, and only discuss terrorism.

Pakistan’s National Security Advisor Sartaj Aziz was to travel to India on Sunday for talks with his Indian counterpart Ajit Doval.

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