Pakistan refused to restore bilateral trade with India, asks for article 370 in J&K

The sudden change after the soft melody is visible in the recent statements given by the delegates of both India and Pakistan. Yesterday, the Financial Coordination Committee of the Pakistani cabinet agreed to import cotton and sugar from India until June 30. Today, the Imran Khan government said that they have postponed the decision until India restores the special status of Jammu and Kashmir.

Pakistan has been softening its tone on the India question for some time now. It decided at a meeting of the Finance Coordinating Committee of Imran's cabinet yesterday that sugar and cotton would be imported from India from June 30.




Pakistan's PM: Imran Khan. Source: Business Standard

But after the cabinet meeting today, Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi and Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid said it would be difficult to normalize bilateral relations if India did not restore article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir. According to Pakistani government sources, Human Rights Minister Shirin Mazari, Sheikh Rashid, Mehmood Qureshi, and Finance Minister Asad Umar opposed imports from India at the cabinet meeting. As a result, they postponed the matter. According to Indian government sources, Pakistan can import sugar and cotton and it required no permission for this. Since India has imposed no ban on exports to Pakistan.

According to diplomatic sources, there are now differences between the various powerhouses in Pakistan over its relations with India. The Pakistani military feels that the Imran government's incessant campaign against the loss of special status in Jammu and Kashmir has been of little use. As a result, they have softened their tone a bit. Again, the fundamentalists are pressuring the army and the government against softening the tone on the India question. Thereafter, there has been self-contradiction in Pakistan's position.

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