Talks proposal with Pakistan is calculated initiative: India
India today said its proposal to have Foreign Secretary-level talks with Pakistan was a calculated initiative to "unlock" the dialogue process and convey directly its immediate concerns about cross-border terrorism.india Updated: Feb 06, 2010 19:01 IST
India on Saturday said its proposal to have Foreign Secretary-level talks with Pakistan was a calculated initiative to "unlock" the dialogue process and convey directly its immediate concerns about cross-border
Government underlines that the offer of dialogue does not mean that it had given up on its expectations about
"satisfactory, tangible and concrete action" by Pakistan against terrorism and bringing the perpetrators of the Mumbai
terror attack to justice.
Making it clear that India will approach the talks with an open mind, sources said it was ready for dialogue on a range
of issues in a comprehensive manner but not necessarily in the format of the composite dialogue that was halted because of 26/11.
Sources told PTI that India has offered the Foreign Secretary-level talks after making a "judgement" about actions
taken by Pakistan with regard to Mumbai attacks and undertaking "calculations" of various aspects.
Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao called up her Pakistani counterpart Salman Bashir more than a week back and invited
him to Delhi for talks.
India, which suspended composite dialogue after Mumbai attacks of November 2008, has proposed two sets of dates to Pakistan for the talks this month. Pakistan's response is awaited.
"We are beginning a process which has been locked for 14 months. We are unlocking the process that has been locked," a source said, while underlining that "dialogue is a realistic approach".
While India's concerns with regard to cross-border terrorism remain, the sources pointed out that there are many other issues in the relationship such as consular access, confidence building measures and people-to-people contact which need to be discussed.
On the issue of terrorism, the sources said India has been conveying concerns over it through various channels but it would be better to directly put across India's point of view to Pakistan through the forum of bilateral dialogue.
While the dialogue in bilateral format has remained suspended since 26/11, leaders and officials of the two countries have been meeting on the sidelines of multilateral events.
Asked what has changed for India to make such an offer, the sources said, "We have been saying all along that the door to dialogue is open.....The relationship with Pakistan continued to exist....Let us be realistic about where we stand."
On whether the Foreign Secretary-level talks would lead to resumption of composite dialogue, the sources said while India was ready for dialogue in a comprehensive manner, terminology of the format was not essential. "Dialogue is the way and it has to be comprehensive."
India has noted "some steps" taken by Pakistan to bring perpetrators of Mumbai attacks to justice but emphasises that "still much more needs to be done."