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Rediff News  All News  » News » Karachi vs Islamabad tussle as Krishna heads to Pak

Karachi vs Islamabad tussle as Krishna heads to Pak

September 07, 2012 11:01 IST

External Affairs Minister SM Krishna will reach Islamabad on Friday to hold a comprehensive dialogue with his Pakistani counterpart Hina Rabbani Khar.

The civilian governments in both India and Pakistan are currently on a weak footing. In Pakistan, the turf war is on between the Judiciary and the Executive while in India, the ruling coalition is facing a severe bout of credibility crisis with scams coming to the forefront everyday.

Congress president Sonia Gandhi, the spirited force behind the ruling coalition, is in New York and will return only after a week.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's weakened image is likely to cast a shadow on his plan, if any, to take India-Pakistan relations to a new level.

Krishna's visit has to be seen in the political perspective where the government is fighting a serious battle to remain on track. A senior member of the National Security Advisory Board was wondering why Krishna was taking 70 journalists along with him to Islamabad. The timing was crucial, he pointed out.

The new reality of Indo-Pak relations is that within Pakistan, the battle is between Karachi (the trade capital) and Islamabad (the national capital). On both sides of the border the passion to make money is rising.

The fire is stoked by institutions like Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry, which are steadily keeping the relations in the right direction.

In view of the unstoppable bilateral ties and Dr Singh's genuine desire to bring peace via trade, relations between Krishna and Khar's make some sense and make some news. The realism on both sides is not to seek drama but to go for slow but firm forward movement.

Over to Islamabad for more news.

Sheela Bhatt in New Delhi