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HindustanTimes Sun,21 Sep 2014

Future bleak for Indo-Pak DGMO talks

Rahul Singh, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, October 15, 2013
First Published: 00:20 IST(15/10/2013) | Last Updated: 00:23 IST(15/10/2013)

There is little possibility of a meeting between the director generals of military operations (DGMO) of India and Pakistan, with the neighbouring country’s army escalating tension in Jammu and Kashmir, a top army officer told HT.

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The officer said there was no proposal from Islamabad yet on the DGMO-level talks to ease rising tensions along the Line of Control (LoC).

Shortly after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif met in New York in September-end, a senior Pakistani diplomat had declared that the DGMOs would meet “within a week.”

The two DGMOs haven’t met in 14 years. They last met in 1999 after the Kargil war, a former army chief confirmed. They, however, speak on phone every Tuesday.

“There’s no point in (having) a meeting when the Pakistani Army has stepped up ceasefire violations to push in infiltrators ahead of the winter months,” the officer said.

Despite stiff domestic opposition, Singh walked the extra mile in New York when he met Sharif, precisely around the same time when the Pakistani Army was backing one of the biggest infiltration bids in the Keran sector of Kupwara district.

The army is closely monitoring the situation along the LoC with infiltration attempts likely to peak over the next few weeks as terrorists make last-ditch efforts to sneak in Kashmir before snow sets in. The fresh wave of instability along the LoC indicates that Pakistani army chief General Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, who retires on November 29, could be looking at setting the agenda for his successor. This is perhaps his way of consolidating his legacy of waging covert war against India.

Also, the Pakistani army may be sending out a strong signal to Sharif — who was ousted from power in a military coup in 1999 — that it is not the civilian leadership but the military that has and will continue to dictate the Kashmir agenda.

External affairs minister Salman Khurshid had last week dubbed the hostility along the LoC “upsetting” and stressed that India and Pakistan had not reached a stage to resume dialogue.


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