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On Monday, he was giving a speech in the nation’s capital at a book discussion of “In Pursuit of Peace: India-Pakistan relations under six Prime Ministers” by Satinder Kumar Lambadh.

The Modi government came to power with a clear understanding that the conditions of discussions with Pakistan needed to be improved, according to author and international affairs columnist Raja Mohan. There cannot be a framework in which India makes concessions or where the future of Kashmir’s status is undetermined. And the notion that India must give in on Kashmir in order to reach a settlement with Pakistan would not be tolerated.

Although he added that the previous framework no longer applies, he said that attempts to engage with Pakistan were made by the Modi administration.

“I believe India found that to be completely unacceptable. However, there was room for interaction within this structure. PM Modi unexpectedly travelled to Nawaz Sharif’s residence in Lahore. Therefore, there was this initial sense of fearlessness in reaching out. While also emphasising that the outdated framework is ineffective, he said.

Raja Mohan stated that the repeal of Article 370 demonstrated that India’s status in relation to Kashmir was no longer subject to discussion.

When Kashmir’s constitutional position changed in August 2019, it was evident that “Look what we do internally in closed.” It was resolved that the status of India’s claim to Kashmir was not up to negotiation, he continued.

At the same occasion, Ajay Bisaria, the former High Commissioner to Pakistan, noted that throughout the course of 75 years, every Prime Minister has attempted to normalise relations with Pakistan, but recently, “tolerance” for terrorism has decreased on both a public and individual level.

“Every Indian Prime Minister in history has had the inclination to mend fences (with Pakistan). If Vajpayee’s first impulse in 1999 had been to board a bus and travel to Lahore. And Dr. Manmohan Singh’s natural inclination was to deliver the address in Amritsar, have breakfast there, lunch there, dinner there, he remarked.

Don’t forget that Prime Minister Modi visited Lahore, said Bisaria. It took the first 18 months of the dispensation to demonstrate all the previous PMs had demonstrated. One instinct was for Nawaz Sharif to attend PM Modi’s swearing-in. A series of meetings followed that. A decision to begin a composite discussion had already been made. There were some attempts through the channels of creative diplomacy even as things got worse in 2016.

He continued by saying that the amount of tolerance for such activities has decreased in India as a result of the terrorism the country has experienced, particularly the 26/11 strikes in 2008.

“What has happened in India is that there is less public and policy tolerance for terrorism. I want to draw attention to the type of terrorism India experienced in the twenty-first century, with 2008 serving as the primary turning point. Since then, terrorism is no longer tolerated as much. Because there was a general sentiment in India that terror would not be tolerated, this government must adopt a stronger stance, Bisaria continued.

Since the repeal of Article 370, Jammu-Kashmir has experienced growth in all areas. Additionally, the action has reduced prospects for terrorists while expanding employment options, particularly for young people.

The Union Territory hosted the G-20 Tourism Working Group meeting in Srinagar from May 22–24, under India’s presidency, as further evidence of the altered situation in “Naya Kashmir” following the repeal of Article 370.

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