India has finally agreed to resume Samjhota Express train service after seven days. With around 200 passengers stranded since last Thursday when it was stopped at the Wagah Border by the Indian authorities- it will now leave for Lahore from New Delhi at 11:30pm (PST) on Thursday.

The relevant authorities cited potential security risks due to protests by farmers, where they ‘seek to avoid any untoward situation arising from the prolonged protest of farmers on the railway tracks’.

According to sources, Indian immigration officials received 72 Indian passengers whose visas had expired at Attari. These passengers were to go by Samjhota Express on October 8 and 12, but could not due to the cancellation of the train by Indian authorities. Similarly, India “deported” 15 Pakistani passengers after expiry of their visas. Fourteen stranded Pakistanis, who were scheduled to return home by the Samjhota Express, arrived in Lahore on Tuesday from Delhi by the Dosti Bus. 

Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has directed the Foreign Office to immediately solve the problems of Pakistanis stranded in India due to non-operation of Samjhota Express. The prime minister also directed facilitation of to the stranded passengers and asked for his office to be updated on the issue.

From this rather unfortunate and distressing turn of events, it is clear that even transportation falls prey to the venomous politics between both neighbors. Even with the strike going on, it is highly unlikely that it had to take more than a week for them to actually cater to the passengers, ones that had been ominously stranded. Such callous behavior between both countries is a clear indication of that there should be more than empty talks and posed pictures to actually develop any semblance of normal relations between both countries.