India-Pakistan Relations:  New Delhi ,Islamabad need baby steps to normalize ties, says Ajay Bisaria

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By Muhammad Luqman

Indian High Commissioner in Pakistan, Ajay Bisaria while urging New Delhi and Islamabad to depart with  seven-decades long history of animosity, has advocated for ‘ baby steps ‘ to normalize the relations between the two South Asian rivals.

“ We need to work for  future  of our generations as two-third of our populations are under the age of 35 with no burden of history,“   Ajay Bisaria told a gathering of businessmen in Pakistan’s eastern city of Lahore.

He said that  cricket relations between the two countries could be revived only after  the improvement  in diplomatic  and  political ties. “ All the Indians and Pakistanis  want  see teams playing  cricket; for this, we have to have favourable conditions,” Ajay Bisaria said.

Accusing media of playing a role of spoiler, Indian diplomat said that India-Pakistan relations had lately become a hostage to the media hype. “ More the media highlights negative things, greater  are the changes of deterioration of  the already strained ties,”  he said.

He said that bilateral  relations should be built on the basis of trade and economy and must be away from violence and war.

“We should not talk about negative and positive lists rather should work on the windows of opportunities that  recently have been short lived,” Ajay Bisaria said.

Indian High Commissioner said that there is no better way of improving bilateral relations than mutually beneficial economic  ties. He said that both Pakistan and India needed to take more steps to remove Non-Tariff Barriers that were a major impediment to bilateral trade relations.

He said that at present, over $ 5 billion trade is being carried out through third country like United Arab Emirates  and Singapore.

“Removal of non-tariff barriers, liberalization of visa and normalization of mutual relation can bring the two-way trade to the height of $ 30 billion,” Indian envoy said while quoting a world bank study.

He said that efforts were on to ease the visa regime for both Pakistanis and Indians. “ Initially, both the countries have agreed to facilitate the exchange of elderly prisoners ,“ Ajay Bisaria told the business community. You can also watch the video

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