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Thursday, November 3, 2011

India Vs Pakistan: More Than Just Cricket!

Article first published as India Vs Pakistan: The Most Favored Notion! on Technorati.


Yesterday Pakistan  announced a breakthrough decision relating to its neighbor India. The country’s cabinet granted the Most Favored Nation (MFN) status to India. The unanimous decision had the Pakistan army’s approval too.

The normal trade relations had always been tied to political complexities between the two hostile neighbors since India’s independence in 1947.

Obsessed with possible threats from its neighbor the Pakistan army had always vetoed normal trade relations. Apart from derailing the peace process with India again and again the Pakistan army had also managed to antagonize the US.

With the grant of MFN status the volume of trade between the two countries is set to triple to over 8 billion US dollars.

The news had been welcomed by all in political, commerce and industry circles in India. The sense of relief was also tremendously felt. India granted MFN status to Pakistan long back in 1996, but Pakistan, devastated by terror, suspicion and mistrust, could never really brace itself up for the return favor up till now.

Recently on October 23, 2011 an Indian army helicopter strayed into Pakistan airspace and was detained. But within hours Pakistan released it being convinced that it was only an accident and not an intrusion. Pakistan seems to be learning the art of reciprocation fast which is a good omen for improving the strained bilateral relations between the two neighbors.

The peace dialogue, in virtual suspension since the Mumbai Terror attack of 26/11, is likely to get a boost with these developments. Reciprocation is poised to become the Most Favored Notion now for India and Pakistan!
 
 Meanwhile, Pakistan Cricket has suffered the biggest setback with its three ace cricketers, under trial for spot fixing since last year, given jail terms ranging from six months to nearly three years today. These cricketers have become the first to have been sentenced for fixing crimes. This is a huge lesson for all the players of the gentleman's game of cricket to put an end to their greed and concentrate full on their field skills. All cricket playing countries must come down heavily on any possibility of match fixing in future. It is crucial for the Pakistan Board to act now and allow no one to shame cricket and the country any more.

Cricket between India and Pakistan has always been the most favored pastime for the millions in both the countries. Clean cricket too can be another most powerful reciprocating force paving the way for a lasting friendship between the two neighbors.


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