In spite of a lot of economic problems, continuous unfair international pressure and the ever hovering hostile clouds of enmity along the borders, the political government of Pakistan has been in a constant effort of establishing friendly relations with neighboring countries. It is not only the policy of the present government but on the whole the strategy of Pakistan to promote cordial relationship with the neighboring countries.

Following the same policy of friendship and alliance, a few days back President Asif Ali Zardari confirmed Pakistan’s consent on visa agreement between Pakistan and India which was signed between the two countries on September 8, 2012. The agreement aimed at giving more concessions and simplifying the procedure to grant visa with a view to promoting people-to-people contact. The objective of this visa agreement between the two countries is to facilitate the travelers. Under this agreement, besides diplomatic, non-diplomatic and official visas, visitor visas shall be issued to persons visiting the other country to meet relatives or friends or for any other legitimate purpose. With a validity of six months this visa shall permit a visitor to visit a maximum of five specified places. This agreement would certainly bring the two countries closer to each other and generate a new air of trust and confidence between the two nations with a lot of positive changes but it could have been much better if the two countries had signed another agreement also regarding the decades long water conflicts.

According to reports a reduced flow of water at Head Marala has recently been noticed by the Pakistani water management authorities. This reduction in water flow would prove very harmful and disastrous for the crops on a large area of Pakistan and it may lead to a situation of famine causing whole large scale starvation. Snatching water from Pakistan and turning Pakistan into a wasteland has always been India’s desire. Kishinganga Project is the worst example in this regard. Under the Kishinganga Project, India has diverted the water of Neelum River through a canal system. Moreover India is building small and big dams on other rivers also which are flowing into Pakistan. All these actions on India’s part are nothing but simply violation of the Indus Waters Treaty. The situation demands new water treaties between India and Pakistan otherwise as a result of water scarcity, Pakistan would become a desert very soon. Trade is always very important but a wasteland could never be a profitable market for the traders.

PROFESSOR ALI SUKHANVER,

Multan, November 21.