In a veiled reference to Pakistan, Union Minister for External Affairs S Jaishankar Friday said that the entire neighbourhood, minus one, has been a fairly good story for regional cooperation. While interacting at the World Economic Forum in the national capital here, Jaishankar said, “I would say the entire neighbourhood, minus one, had actually been a fairly good story of regional cooperation.”
The foreign minister also spoke on a wide range of issues, including Pakistan, Kashmir, trade war among others.
Talking about nationalism in India, Jaishankar said that India is an exception as the country is more nationalistic, but it doesn’t see a tension between being nationalist and being international. “India is an exception as we are more nationalistic, but at the same time we don’t see a tension between being nationalistic and being international, in the sense of engaging more with the world, so nationalism is not a negative sentiment,” he said.
Earlier, Jaishankar had said that it is expected from Pakistan to pull out all stops to challenge the decision of diluting Article 370. “What do you expect the Pakistanis to say (after current restrictions are lifted and normalcy is restored)… we expect calm and happiness to return,” Jaishankar said in response to a question during his appearance at The Heritage Foundation, a top American think-tank.
“No, they (Pakistan) will not. They will paint apocalyptic scenarios because, one, that is their wish and, two, that’s actually what their game plan has been for 70 years,” he added.
On August 5, the Centre had scrapped the special status provided to Jammu and Kashmir by diluting the Article 370 of the Constitution. Through this process, the government bifurcated the state into two union territories, namely Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh.