Two days after the Gurdaspur terror attack, the Pakistan media on Wednesday cast serious doubts on India’s assertion that terrorists involved in the Gurdaspur terror attack originated from Pakistan, but was unequivocal in calling the latest incident “another rock in the way of the road to peace”.
Despite incontrovertible evidence offered by New Delhi on the basis of data deciphered from global positioning system (GPS) devices recovered from terrorists establishing that they had sneaked in from across the border, the Pakistani media seemed to be in denial on Pakistan’s fingerprints in the attack.
“Given the proximity to the border, it is perhaps inevitable that fingers on the Indian side are quickly being pointed in the direction of Pakistan, but it is too early to say who the attackers were, or precisely where they came from,” said an editorial in The Express Tribune , a leading English daily published from 11 cities across Pakistan.
But the Pakistani newspapers were unequivocal on the negative fallout of the Gurdaspur incident on the fledgling India-Pakistan peace process. “Whoever was responsible for the attack, it will have automatically fuelled the trust deficit that already exists, and further bedevil any chance of peace between the two states,” said The Express Tribune editorial.
To buttress its point, the editorial cited the Indian Punjab’s chief minister (Parkash Singh Badal) calling off a meeting with the Pakistani high commissioner, as well as Indian cricket authorities indicating that there is no chance of bilateral cricket ties between the countries resuming any time soon.
Striking a note of realism, The Express Tribune said, “The recent meeting between Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif now appears to have been little more than cosmetic, and has not translated into a lowering of tension, nor should it be seen as an indicator of willingness on the part of India to modify positions held since Partition.”
In a similar vein, another newspaper,
Dawn underscored that the Gurdaspur attack
had imperiled the India-Pakistan peace overtures. “Already, the prime ministerial meeting in Ufa, Russia, appears to have been eclipsed,” said an editorial in the mass circulation daily.
“But, all is not lost yet,” the Dawn editorial concluded with a touch of pragmatism. “As the facts from Gurdaspur emerge in the days ahead, Pakistan could extend its full cooperation in the investigation — if the facts do point to a role in Gurdaspur of elements operating from Pakistani soil.”