Peacemongers joyous over resumption of Pakistan-India trade

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Finally, two years of tense relations between Pakistan and India have seemingly stepped towards normalization, bringing a ray of hope for peacemongers to witness stability and a peaceful environment in the region in times ahead.

The hope was rekindled by a series of events including a much-desired ceasefire at the border, the meeting of the India-Pakistan Permanent Indus Commission, and an exchange of letters by the two prime ministers eying a peaceful coexistence.

It was further consolidated when the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Federal Cabinet in Islamabad on March 31 allowed the commercial import of white sugar from India up to 500,000 metric tons till June 30, 2021 through land and sea routes.

Welcoming the resumption of trade between Pakistan and India, the newly launched South Asia Peace Action Network (SAPAN) – which aims to bring together groups and individuals from both Countries working for peace under one umbrella – has termed it a positive step towards the normalization of bilateral ties.

“It is heartening that the talks have started to reopen trade,’’ the former Planning Commission member and Delhi-based peace activist Dr. Syeda Hameed said.

“There is an umeed ki kiran (ray of hope) on the horizon,” Dr. Syeda Hameed added.

The peace activities were of the view that these moves give rise to hope that the positive trajectory will continue and lead to a resumption of free movement of people on both sides of the border.

“Things are moving ahead. It is a very important moment and we must take advantage of it,’’ the former General Secretary of Pakistan-India Peoples’ Forum for Peace and Democracy Jatin Desai said.

The activists hoped the current thaw in Pakistan-India relations will lead to more exchanges between the Countries.

“We need to broaden the peace constituency by bringing people together, learning from each other on issues that affect us and that have the potential to change our future”, the Co-founder of Aaghaz-e-Dosti Ravi Nitesh said.

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