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Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi (L) shakes handswith Afghan president Ashraf Ghani during the inauguration of the new Parliament complex in Kabul on December 25, 2015. ─ AFP/File
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi (L) shakes handswith Afghan president Ashraf Ghani during the inauguration of the new Parliament complex in Kabul on December 25, 2015. ─ AFP/File

NEW DELHI: Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Friday that he saw Pakistan as a potential bridge between South Asia and Afghanistan.

Addressing Afghan deputies in the new parliament building he inaugurated in Kabul before an announced meeting with Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in Lahore, he said: “We know that Afghanistan’s success will require the cooperation and support of each of its neighbours. And all of us in the region — India, Pakistan, Iran and others — must unite, in trust and cooperation, behind this common purpose and in recognition of our common destiny.”

Indian prime minister inaugurates parliament building in Kabul

He saw Afghanistan becoming a haven of peace and a hub for the flow of ideas, commerce, energy and investment in the region when “we will all prosper together”.

The Press Trust of India quoted Mr Modi as saying efforts were under way to improve Afghanistan’s connectivity by land and sea, including through Chahbahar in Iran.

“That is why I hope that Pakistan will become a bridge between South Asia and Afghanistan and beyond,” he said. “I hope that the day will come soon when energy from Central Asia will power prosperity in our region; when a Kabuliwala can once again come across easily to win Indian hearts; when we in India can relish the wonderful fruits of Afghanistan; when Afghans do not have to pay an enormous price to buy their favourite products from India.”

Mr Modi told the Afghan parliament that every youth in Afghanistan should see a future in which IT stood for information technology, not international terrorism.

He said Afghanistan would succeed only when terrorism no longer flowed across the border and when nurseries and sanctuaries of terrorism were shut.

Declaring that India was in Afghanistan to contribute, not to compete, to lay the foundations of future and not light the flame of conflict, Mr Modi said terrorism and violence could not be the instrument to shape the future of the strife-torn country or dictate the choices its people make.

“There are some who do not want us to be here. There are some who did not want us to be here. There were those who saw sinister designs in our presence here. There are others who were uneasy at the strength of our partnership. Some even tried to discourage us.

“You never doubted the sincerity of our commitment and the strength of our friendship. And you have seen the fruits of our partnership. You have judged us by what you see, not what others tell you, including about the mysterious Indian consulates.”

The Indian prime minister said Afghans had the wisdom to seek peace with neighbours, but also the courage to defend their freedom. “And Afghans of all persuasions must have the right to seek peace among themselves.”

“You can be Pashtuns, Uzbeks, Tajiks, Hazaras. You can be Muslims, Hindus and Sikhs. But you are proud Afghans who can come together as one nation and one people. You may have fought in the name of religion; or for the cause of identity. But it is now time for Afghans to come together in peace,” he said.

Published in Dawn, December 27th, 2015

Comments (133) Closed

bryan Dec 27, 2015 08:09am

South Asia needs a vision broader wider and deeper for its collective future. Someone had to rise above pettiness and past. In 50 years from now we must have at least a South American level of prosperity.

Rational Corp Dec 27, 2015 08:22am

Finally a Great Leader who sees progress and prosperity from a wider regional angle. Way to go Sir.

Raja Ragu Raman Dec 27, 2015 08:25am

Great qualities of a visionary leader. India has got the best leader...Currently 7th most influential leader in the world but soon will be in Top 5...

Muneer Kabul Dec 27, 2015 08:27am

Lots of Love to Mr.Modi and Indians from Kabul, Afghanistan.

Desi Dimag Dec 27, 2015 08:34am

That was a great speech by Modi Ji, in english without seeing pre written text.

I am too American Dec 27, 2015 08:35am

Modi sees Pakistan to bridge to Afghanistan, and rest of the central Asia, he knows very well that India cannot become a global power without the gas from central Asia and access to the world's largest market for Indian goods. He is also concerned about China's growing influence in Pakistan. By bringing Pakistan into alliance India will be unchallenged power in the Asia. US is also putting a lot of pressure on India to sort out mess with Pakistan so US can make Pakistan meets its demand regarding nukes and China. The real problem is Indian internal politics which is nothing less than their soap operas. It will be a miracle to bring all politicians to one page to make peace with Pakistan.

Tweeter Dec 27, 2015 08:45am

The sinister Chanakya theory being unveiled by Modi. This is in addition to his earlier tirades about India's neighbors. This "Bridge" is actually his deep rooted ambition to acquire transit to Kabul through Wagah! Jandal may convince Nawaz Sharif who is susceptible to such suggestions. So help us God

s.khan Dec 27, 2015 08:51am

resolution of all territorial issues incl kashmir should be discussed once and for all and then pakistan should think of opening trade routes for india.

Tamil Dec 27, 2015 08:53am

We Indians need to learn to be sincere. We critiscim even pakistan in Kabul, then go visit Lahore. It is this insincerety and deceit that has got us a bad name as untrust worthy nation.

Najma Hisham Dec 27, 2015 09:05am

The irony is a thousand years from today there will be new communities and new religions in Hind and Afghanistan and our descendants will be wondering why we were fighting in the first place anyway when we have the same dna and heritage and culture.

Ali Z Dec 27, 2015 09:17am

Pakistan and India need to resolve their differences with open mind and should not let Afghans suffer at the altar of their disputes.

Maxx Dec 27, 2015 09:18am

Indian maps shows Afghanistan as India's neighbor...should use that imaginary corridor for trade with that country.

AKKS Dec 27, 2015 09:19am

It's a very impressive speech indeed! Modi's actions, hard work and charisma has earned him the 7th position as the most influential world leader in a recent survey!

AXH Dec 27, 2015 09:20am

The ONLY reason Modi is playing nice to Pakistan is because his government has realized that without land route through Pakistan, there is very little chance of flow of cost effective supply of goods from India to Central Asia and vise versa.

What Modi lacked was his sincerity towards Pakistan by not allowing the cricket series to go through per the plan so that PCB could not benefit from it financially. So, tell us Mr. Modi, how can we take your words for the face value when your deeds show something else?

AXH Dec 27, 2015 09:22am

@Ali Z - Please keep in mind that it is Pakistan who has provided shelter to millions of Afghans and have paid heavily for its hospitality. The non-stop flow of drugs and weapons is what we have endured in return.

Junaid, India Dec 27, 2015 09:25am

@Muneer Kabul thanks a lot bro .and lots of love from India to all Afgan brothers and sisters Historically India and Afganistan always had very good relations. Hope Pakistani friends will understand this and instead of becoming hurdle they should try to become bridge.

Maxx Dec 27, 2015 09:36am

Neighbors are more important than neighbors neighbor, the sooner India realizes that the better. First engage Pakistan and improve relations than think about having cordial ties with CAR's and Afghanistan.

Sunil Dec 27, 2015 09:38am

Provided there should be no envy to the development of Afghanistan.

Desi Dimag Dec 27, 2015 09:40am

@AXH Sometimes watch international media also to know the reality.

Citizen Dec 27, 2015 09:50am

First solve all bilateral issues including Kashmir then see toward that bridge

Avinash Dec 27, 2015 09:52am

Kashmir issue will surely be resolved during Modi's rule. He knows that the expectation is huge and he'll go to any extent to solve the long standing issues..

RN Dec 27, 2015 09:56am

"You have judged us by what you see, not what others tell you" - Well said! India spent 700 crore taxpayer rupees on that wonderful looking Parliament building in addition to the money spent on roads and electricity. That's called positive contribution which others should learn. No wonder Afghanis love Indians.

AXH Dec 27, 2015 09:57am

@Desi Dimag - Not sure what you meant. I live abroad and have access to all sorts of media outlets. The bottom line is that unless India starts to show its sincerity by taking practical steps, things are not going to improve. How do we know that this is again not another ploy from the Indian government (remember the botched terror boat incident and then the hilarious spy pigeon episode?) where at one hand it is trying to show to the world that it is sincerely making efforts to engage with the Pakistani government and on the other hand, it is going to stage a drama and blame the Pakistani government for that? The trust factor is just not there.

Arif Dec 27, 2015 10:11am

It's all about getting share in CPEC. They know it is a game changer and the other route they are trying through Iran would fail miserably. Beware and Becareful Pakistan!

Faisal Dec 27, 2015 10:12am

Yes, Afghanistan might be the core concern, but first lets talk about Kashmir, Siachin etc.

Iqbal Dec 27, 2015 10:13am

Pakistan paid and is still paying a heavy price for giving Afghans shelter in our homeland since decades. They were allowed to integrate into our society, buy properties, do business with majority having Pakistani credentials. Majority of the drug smuggling related executions in Saudi Arabia are Afghans having Pakistani credentials bringing a bad name to Pakistan.

Since, Afghans have such affinity with their Indian brethren why not leave from Pakistan now and go back to your peace loving country to develop it into an IT giant. After all your Indian brethren are there to look after your interests. Just leave Pakistan alone.

NS Dec 27, 2015 10:20am

These are just words and words don't mater. What matters is actions as actions speak louder than words. There is too much acrimony scince BJP took office and now India will need to work hard to gain Pak trust. It will require some serious efforts and sacrifices to form this bridge.

Is India and Indians ready to do what it takes to make peace happen? Is India and Indians ready to stay the course no matter what? The reason I say that is because India hold the key to peace - is she ready to exercise that option? I think everyone knows what I am talking about otherwise the words will be just words.

Mashal Kohi Dec 27, 2015 10:23am


khanm Dec 27, 2015 10:25am

Let us create regional harmony... let the past be bygone and start a new chapter of peace and prosperity...Observe good faith and justice toward all nations. Cultivate peace and harmony with all.

Hasan Dec 27, 2015 10:28am

Modi is a great politician

R K HASTIR (India ) Dec 27, 2015 10:30am

@Muneer Kabul L O V E YOU---you people are always some where in our THOUGHTS.

Desi Dimag Dec 27, 2015 10:38am

Punch line was "You have judged us by what you see, not what others tell you, including about the mysterious Indian consulates.”

Aub Dec 27, 2015 10:38am

@Arif cpec is link between China and african countries through your gawadar port.India has Already sea connectivity to African countries.

bharat Dec 27, 2015 10:39am

Well disputes may not be resolved in the next 1OO years but we can try avoid war if possible. How many wars are we going to fight now ?

Bobby Paul Dec 27, 2015 10:40am

@Citizen Other wise WHAT?

DifferentPerspective Dec 27, 2015 10:53am

A good speech by Modi, I wish it were as sincere as well!!!

R Yegya Narayanan Dec 27, 2015 10:56am

To those who want to find a motive for Mr.Modi reaching out to Pakistan, that he wants the land route to be opened up to markets across Pakistan, the only answer is India can survive without the land route as it had done in the past, of course with a cost to bear for that. But can they not understand what economic prosperity it would provide for people of Pakistan and beyond? For long, we had allowed zealots from both sides of the aisle to dictate the course of relationship between the two nations. It is time that those who want economic prosperity, social cohesion, peace and harmony among the people of the region to take up the responsibility and chalk out the course of events. India has now a strong PM whose word is final within and outside his party and Pakistan should snatch this opportunity, if it wants to focus on improving the living conditions of its people rather that waste its resources in boosting its defence. Will it do that?

Vic Dec 27, 2015 10:59am

@Arif CPEC has china as one of shareholder. why would we pay transit fees to china for transport over pakistan? Why not just bypass china and have direct trade with afghanistan and CAR through only Pakistan.

Optimistic Pakistani Dec 27, 2015 11:12am

@Desi Dimag half of the things media shows is far from reality and that's the reason people are making biased conclusions

Khangee Dec 27, 2015 11:14am

@Aub what?.dude at least look at the globe before you post on this board. AFRICA IS DIFFERENT CONTINENT THAN ASIA. CONTINENT MEANS A MASS OF A LAND SEPARATED BY THE BODY OF WATER (OCEAN OR SEA) ALL AROUND. However, China does not need a network of roads to operate a port (Gawadar). The CPEC is mainly to use Central Asia, Iran, Turkey, Europe, Russia. In other words like more than half of the population of this world not including India.

7TH SENSE Dec 27, 2015 11:22am

What a clarity ! It's almost like a blueprint for the Region's success and Afghanistan in particular!!

Reality Dec 27, 2015 11:23am

@Maxx we will... One day... Ameen

Apoorv Swarup Dec 27, 2015 11:34am

@Khangee Dude do see where china is in that globe of yours. In order to ship something from shanghai to africa/europe the nautical distance is incredibly higher and thus the time required to ship things as well is very high. Logistically speaking the costs and time required to ship stuff to not only africa but even Europe (via the Suez) reduces considerably if Gwadar does become their outpost. India on the other hand is seeking chabhahar in Iran to gain access to Central Asia and its markets/energy resources

Capt C M Khan Dec 27, 2015 11:36am

Deeds are Better than Words. Mr Modi could have done the same by allowing the cricket before embarking on his plane. It would have really gone well with Pakistan than this Red carpet like thing flying in. Hopefully the Incompetent Pakistani Government sees through Mr Modi's game plan. He is playing a Stick and Carrot policy with Pakistan which is a real Shame to do to their neighbors if one is sincere.

SRIDHAR RAGHUNATHA RAO Dec 27, 2015 11:39am

A brilliant vision and a good workable message to all neighbours.

Yuva Dec 27, 2015 11:41am

@Muneer Kabul thank you muneer. Our mahabarat character gandhari is from Afghanistan.

Yuva Dec 27, 2015 11:42am

@Arif lol :p

amir khan Dec 27, 2015 11:45am

this man talks big game . well then you want access to CAR , Afghanistan through Pakistan .then realise first that without the resolution of the Kashmir issue you ain't getting very far. you tried to by pass Pakistan through Iran but once again you've realised Pakistan has a pivotal role which can not be ignored. atleast with this realization now. you will walk the talk and resolve the Kashmir issue if you truly call your self a bold and brave leader

Anuj Dec 27, 2015 11:45am

@AXH Wait...What about a full fledged cricket series with Pakistan in Pakistan rather than in a third nation which will not add much to anything but financial gains for PCB. I'm hopeful that Mr.Modi has something that much bigger in his mind rather than a piece of a pancake for each others.

Mathew Dec 27, 2015 11:53am

Peace in Afghanistan will benefit everyone and more importantly people of Afghanistan have a chance to live prosperous life if peace prevails in Afghanistan.What wars brought to Afghanistan is death and destruction only.

Rajat Dec 27, 2015 11:58am

@Khangee sir, u r a genius. Cpec is going south from China towards gawadar, then how is China going to use it for Russia and Europe, which is north and North East from China? Secondly, China has direct access to central Asian countries n to Turkey etc, why would it construct cpec to reach turkey? You sure you looked at the globe before posting here?

Komal S Dec 27, 2015 12:00pm

@AXH Don't get worked up on cricket, even PCB has stopped talking about it. I am pretty sure Indian government has told Pakistan it is better to play bilateral series in Pakistan instead of UAE or Sri Lanka. Probably very soon the two countries will find a window in 2016 to play cricket in Pakistan or do a joint series where games are played in Both India and Pakistan.

wellwisher Dec 27, 2015 12:01pm

since 1979 Afghans are fighting.One doubt their brain power.

Absano Dec 27, 2015 12:02pm

i am still wondering what has caused this sudden magnanimity to flow after a bitter long drawn out campaign to isolate Pakistan. if Indians had this approach earlier, things would already have gone a different way in the region. Countries dont just wake up one morning and change their tune to suit the weather. Tell us what's happening, somebody? journalists? analysts?

SDA Dec 27, 2015 12:02pm

@Arif Agree 100%.

AW Dec 27, 2015 12:02pm

PM Modi has proved to be a great leader with vision and courage. He has what it takes to create permanent peace and prosperity in South Asia and beyond. We call see his recent visit to Afghanistan and Pakistan as the message of HOPE

Komal S Dec 27, 2015 12:05pm

@Avinash Take a deep breath man. I know you love Modi, but these problems do not get solved over night.

M.Saeed Dec 27, 2015 12:08pm

What is the use of a bridge to prosperity when a slightest bad current with mainstream would blow the fuse of the whole circuit-board of prosperity? First and foremost need is to "stabilize the mainstream", before bridging it.

Junaid, India Dec 27, 2015 12:09pm

@Khangee sea route is the cheapest...India still is doing good without your Pass. Stop flattering yourself. CPEC might be important for you and China. If India get any advantage through it its is Good but we are doing good without it

Komal S Dec 27, 2015 12:10pm

@Khangee Hmm.. may be you should follow the advice you are giving. China does not need Pakistan to connect to central asia, russia, europe. Please check the map before saying something stupid. The CPEC is primarily to get port accessso the middle east oil can reach China through their western region.

Amanraj Dec 27, 2015 12:16pm

@Arif India has alterative (chabahar) to connect with Afghanistan,Central Asia.So CPEC reference is irrevalent. CPEC success depends on India too, as total african population equal to Indian population

Amanraj Dec 27, 2015 12:18pm

@Khangee To connect with Central Asia, Turkey, Russia,Europe, India has already another planned corridor(North–South Transport Corridor).

kkk Dec 27, 2015 12:19pm

@Arif any nation honest hardworking ,deciplined educated citzion , peaceful and corruption free Environnement these are the quality that are consider gamechanger för any country. Example is Germany and Singapur . One may gave billion and billion doller project to any country if mass and ruler Of that country lack above qualities then these would not work .

Desi Dimag Dec 27, 2015 12:20pm

Modi Ji a true leader, spreading love, peace, friendship as well as trade and might.

Allahdino M H Kango Dec 27, 2015 12:27pm

@AXH Damn cricket. Talk of Kashmir, Siachen, Junagarh, Hyderabad Deccan and other border disputes besides India's internal treatment of minorities specially Muslims.

I am too American Dec 27, 2015 12:41pm

150 Millions Pakistanis is a huge market for India. He is not talking about few millions poor Afghans, he is talking Pakistani and CAS market.

ak Dec 27, 2015 12:46pm

@bryan South American ?

Abdul Wadi Dec 27, 2015 12:57pm

The toll plaza of the bridge is located in Kashmir. No free crossings possible.

Abdul Wadi Dec 27, 2015 01:03pm

@Amanraj ....Chahbahar to Herat road is under control Talibab since 2008. That is just hypothetical and far away from reality. No option is available other than driving through Pakistan.

Pagrri Sambhal Dec 27, 2015 01:06pm

welcome statement.

sbk Dec 27, 2015 01:17pm

Since time immortal, the humans have always been greedy to own the land, women and wealth. Wars have been fought; crimes indulged; The story continues. Kashmir is one such issue.

John, US Dec 27, 2015 01:27pm

I have been following this newspaper for quite a few days. Good news is that most Pakistanis are sensible and peace loving. But there are few people who all the time blame that India and US does not cooperate with Pakistan. But when they do, these people think there is a hidden agenda. This negative mentality is dangerous. My advise to Pakistanis is to read international newspapers too sometime to look at things from other angles. You always see what you want to see, but if you want to know the truth, you may have to do a bit research.

Islam shah Dec 27, 2015 01:29pm

@Maxx inshaallah, the corridor will turn real one day to connect India to Tajikistan, Pakistan and afghanistan

Javed Dec 27, 2015 01:31pm

@s.khan no need

Nasir Dec 27, 2015 01:39pm

I am unable to understand moodi's mood, Pakistan is problem, no no Pakistan is bridge. It's good to keep business and conflicts separated like Spain and UK but for that we need environment of trust. You want route to Afghanistan for prosperity of region but you have problem with CPEC.

Anwar Shah Dec 27, 2015 01:45pm

@Islam shah .......CPEC is being financed and executed by China with Pakistani assistance, primarily to look after the trade routes needs of India, the needs of China and Pakistan if any fall at a much lower priority.

Khanra Dec 27, 2015 01:54pm

@Aub CPEC isn't just China connection to Arabian Sea, but also is what will connect Pakstan to Central Asia via Kashgar. It's the shortest route into Central Asia and completely avoids the unstable abyss that is Afghanistan.

Canadian Dec 27, 2015 02:04pm

@Aub do you know your geography ? I think you should take a lesson or two in geography before commenting. Africa has nothing to do with CPEC.

zafar Dec 27, 2015 02:09pm

@Rational Corp LOL! after 1 and half year frustration he is able to see reality and power of Pakistan!

sbk Dec 27, 2015 02:11pm

@sbk , The reality is both Pakistan and India wants to own Kashmir. Nobody is sincere about what Kashmir people wants. Again part of greediness story.

cc Dec 27, 2015 02:17pm

@AXH Lets hear from you, what is more important 'Cricket Ties' or 'Poor Afghans welfare'?!!! Why can't both go together?

Thought Dec 27, 2015 02:24pm

@Rational Corp

A great political lollypop, just learn that how easy its for him to take you on one peak (extreme) and now on other.

Zulfiqar Dec 27, 2015 02:47pm

India's interest in Afghanistan is simply because of Pakistan. Its a case of 'the enemy of my enemy is my friend'. Afghanistan does not share a border with India nor does it have any significant cultural, religious or historical links with the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan. During the time undivided India shared a border with Afghanistan, there were constant wars and skirmishes between them. India is only propping up today's highly anti-Pakistan Afghan intelligentsia as a way of squeezing Pakistan from both sides.

Abdulla Hussain Dec 27, 2015 02:53pm

Pakistan is very important to all nations yet the leaders do not have a vision required to of benefit Pakistan, all they are busy is to loot Pakistan for personal gain, no one thinks of development of Pakistan. The recent flash visit by Modi means something, he has realised that without Pakistan's support India cannot gain much from Afghanistan's rebuilding.

Roger Dec 27, 2015 02:58pm

Pakistan strategic location is so important and breathing line for the world survival. Pakistan can be bridge between India and Afghanistan subjected that India to resolve Kashmir, Sachen and water issues with Pakistan. Although India doesn't have border within Afghanistan. And doesn't figure in Pakistan, Iran and others — united front, but Pakistan will try to accommodate India in the group of neighbors subjective to India behaviour.

Azaan Dec 27, 2015 02:58pm

Don't flatter yourself, if he was as you say a great leader his first job in office would have been to solve all land disputes with his neighbouring countries.modi desperately needs access via Pakistan to energy rich Central Asia and ecomically rich Europe. Pakistan should insist on resolving the land issues first and once legally binded then talk about giving any sort of access.

suresh deshpande Dec 27, 2015 03:10pm

@Rajat you are right Rajat.

Saeed Masood Dec 27, 2015 03:11pm

Pakistan must make itself very very strong economically and Militarily all our neighbors are Jealous of us...only China is our good friend...

Raja Farhat Abbas Dec 27, 2015 03:14pm

@John, US The same applies to you aswell,so before making judgements about us look inside your own shirt collarthank you.I would never trust an Indian like Modi because he is false when it comes to us Pakistani's in my opinion.

Nexus Dec 27, 2015 03:23pm

The bridge goes through Kashmir!

Reality Dec 27, 2015 03:24pm

@Absano yes, correctly something changed.. Since Raheel came from US... Havn't talked much after that.. Earlier than that he used to talk everyday... And after that things started to improved... May he got some lessons there..

Sana Zak Dec 27, 2015 03:42pm

@Abdul Wadi who cares, world is too big compared to road from Chabber to Herat... If holding on to small piece of land would have made talibans so powerful, they would hav ruled world to bring in sharia. Fortunately they are not welcome in their own country, so rather than boasting ownership, first think what is the great use of the power to hold that piece of land and make life of poor better than what they have now. Using it as toll bridge or ransom would not bring any good use of that..

Dr.Sadaf Dec 27, 2015 04:09pm

@Junaid, India , we are not a hurdle, both of you can do whatever you want but not at the cost of our security and economic concerns which are actually very valid.

lafanga Dec 27, 2015 04:10pm

So Mr. Modi first bad mouths Pakistan in Kabul then wants Pakistan to be bridge to Kabul from Delhi. Hypocrisy at its best.

Mr. Modi if you want to deal with Pakistan then deal with Pakistan directly. Take steps to show Pakistanis that you are sincere. Stop your aggression on LoC. Stop meddling in Baluchistan. Start playing cricket with Pakistan. Encourage others to visit Pakistan for cricket series. These steps will provide you a red carpet between Delhi and Kabul via Lahore not just a rackity bridge.

Dr.Sadaf Dec 27, 2015 04:10pm

The bridge which he wants to use mercilessly and the govt of Pakistan will not be able to do anything about it, personal agenda is of utmost importance.

Noshin Dec 27, 2015 04:31pm

The last comment by Mr.modi is admirable.....

Abhishek Dec 27, 2015 04:56pm

@Arif india has already planned. First search google type nstc i.e North South Transport Corridor and read

M Akram Dec 27, 2015 06:03pm

The day India let the people of Kashmir decide their own fate and stop inciting trouble in Balochistan, same day people of Pakistan will allow India free access to Afghanistan. No more no less. Despite the loss of East Pakistan people of Pakistan can still live with India as a friendly neighbour.

kam Dec 27, 2015 06:13pm

Any and all afghans in here please could you tell us what you think of Pakistan looking after 3 million of your people? At least the taleban are grateful to Pakistan for that. If you afghans are so honourable people please open your borders and take in the Syrian refugees.

Alam Dec 27, 2015 06:13pm

@Junaid, India ..I hope Indians can have same feelings about Nepalis who lies in their neighbourhood. Nepal is a small Hindu state, no border dispute with India but still they are getting rough treatment. The ancestors of Afghanistan had been invading India for hundreds of years and ransacked their Mandirs but Indian's love Afghan's and not Nepalis. Not strange enough?

Concerned Dec 27, 2015 06:23pm

@Arif, what's CPEC - it is a project financed by China for movement of their goods and services to exit from China to the warm waters of Arabian sea for which they employ their technicians and labour and control its management for the first 20 years as its payback. Suppose post the 20th year if China finds a route and mode of transport more economical then it is unclear the fate of CEPC - $40b is not a huge sum in today's world, but its continued sustenance post the first 20 year is important.

Amir Dec 27, 2015 06:35pm

you can just dream about this bridge which Pakistan never allow.

Truth Dec 27, 2015 08:11pm

Independent Kashmir is the answer to all the problem!

saqib Dec 27, 2015 09:04pm

We give them refuge in their millions for 40 years, and india gets the benefits. Let india take millions of afghans, then lets see them talk big.

salman m Dec 27, 2015 09:04pm

Do not fall for Modis tricks. He is the biggest enemy of Pakistan. He is showing the sweetness to get access to trade route via Pakistan.

Siddhu Dec 27, 2015 09:06pm

@AXH you are wrong. India can do without Pakistan also. India can reach Central Asia via Iran also. Iran has better railway & road infrastructure

saqib Dec 27, 2015 09:08pm

Let india have the drug culture, gun culture and millions of refugees then I would like to see them talk big.

Mustafa R. Dec 27, 2015 09:11pm

@Rational Corp;

'Great Leader who sees progress and prosperity from a wider regional angle.'

Modi's vision is too narrow for Pakistan, we are not confined to South Asia, we lie at the confluence of regions.

Vishwajit Dec 27, 2015 09:27pm

India and Pakistan and Bangladesh coming together with some kind of limited federation could be game changer. I know it's not for today. May be, a goal for next 100 years or so.

Let's first start with free movement of people and trade.

Syed Ahmed, Canada Dec 27, 2015 09:40pm

Definitely Pakistan is a ever lasting bridge between Central and South Asia and Afghanistan. India can certainly relish the wonderful fruits of Afghanistan. Let Pakistan also reap some benefits, let water flow in its rivers.

Luke Francis Dec 27, 2015 09:45pm

Modi is thinking for the whole of South Asia.....If united it could be a force to reckon with.....I hope people think beyond their petty political differences....

Jatinder Dec 27, 2015 10:36pm

@Mustafa R. Not really -- it is actually a quid pro quo. You give us access to Afghanistan and we will give to access to east asia, all the way upto Thailand and Indonesia. Oil is down so middle east and central Asia is not the future.

Farooq (USA) Dec 27, 2015 10:38pm

@Tamil I fully agree with you. If India is sincere in peace, then Modi should stop rhetoric and blame. It was India's action to ban Pakistani flights over Indian space which prompted the sealing of transit route. In my view, the only reason India is so much interested in Afghanistan is because of Pakistan and China. Trying to circle Pakistan by winning the hearts of Afghans. One simple question, where was India when Soviet tried to occupy it? Whose blood was shed to rid Afghanistan of Soviets?

Icon of Honesty Dec 27, 2015 11:32pm

It will be a big shame for Pakistan to allow India a corridor through Pakistan to Afghanistan without a settlement on Kashmir. This must never happen until Kashmir issue is resolved. We are not opposed to the corridor but India must resolve Kashmir according to the wishes of Kashmiris. Until then no corridor for India.

berni Dec 28, 2015 12:05am

We all need the Russians to bring peace & prosperity in this region. We're too weak to deal with mighty Taliban and their supporters.

Mani Dec 28, 2015 01:44am

I am still thinking n thinking, what on earth would have happened over night that changes mr.modi's mind to the opposite and otherwise direction . A very surprise visit is so surprising yet fishy. but let's be positive and see what he will brings up next. I hope he has finds out in the end it dosent worth it to break it rather make it.

Gul Dec 28, 2015 01:45am

@I am too American wonderful comments

Gul Dec 28, 2015 01:50am

@Junaid, India ... why not India such relation with Nepal

AXH Dec 28, 2015 02:13am

@Siddhu - If India could do that easily then you wouldn't see Modi in Pakistan. Since he came to power, the Indian army has been shelling at the LoC non-stop, killing innocent civilians for no reason. This Indian government did everything to malign Pakistan by adopting to tactics like the terror-boat incident, the pigeon story, etc. Now, all of a sudden, Modi shows the "courage" to make a "surprise" stopover in Pakistan. It could have fooled me if I hadn't been following the developments all along but it did not.

Raja Farhat Abbas Dec 28, 2015 04:21am

@Siddhu Of course you Indians know better when it comes to anything and one day their will be a very rude awakening for you lot, greater powers have come and gone and you Indians are no where near a great power.

Irfan Dec 28, 2015 06:38am

@Arif yeah man 1 road route a game changer! Live in ur own world.

Zak Dec 28, 2015 07:06am

@Yuva learn to live in the present, get out mythological stories.

Ramesh Sharma Dec 28, 2015 07:22am

@AXH Ok be our guest if only thing you can find faults in him.

Ramesh Sharma Dec 28, 2015 07:46am

@Roger Do you know whose behavior is more worrisome for India? Once you realize than you have tell that party to change its behavior to have peace in the subcontinent.

Ramesh Sharma Dec 28, 2015 07:50am

@Reality Great analysis.

Ramesh Sharma Dec 28, 2015 07:55am

@Alam Please don't blame India as it is the problem between their own communities who are blocking the border.

Planettrekker Dec 28, 2015 10:38am

China plays dirty by supporting a despotic N.Korea so as to geographically isolate a competing S.Korea - which is forced to trade by sea and air. The Chinese know that if the Koreas unite (as they should), they will be a powerful entity as Korean goods will overland to Russia and Europe. This will threaten a self-serving Chinese economic lock on that region. Hopefully Pakistan will not take the same selfish route to deny Indian goods transit westwards, or India deny Pakistani goods transit eastwards. Time for regional maturity for the common good of both nations.

raza Dec 28, 2015 12:40pm

we need to be honest with ourselves.. Mr Modi makes a speech the same day in Afghanistan and blames Pakistan for problems there. and then he lands in Lahore in an undiplomatic manner, even neighbors do not visit each other on such short notice.. and we all go crazy praising him... Actions should speak louder than words and we only see his actions and words against Pakistan... He can not allow a cricket series to be played and expect us to go extra miles for him. just read his speech and we understand that this is yet another attempt by him to malign our image at home, in afghanistan and international community if things did not go as per his designs whereas he has very little to offer or nothing at all to offer us in return.. we should stop praising him for his motivational and anti pakistan speech and should see matters in perspective. friendship is best if on equal grounds of respect else it will be obedience at times costing national interests ..

karan Dec 28, 2015 08:03pm

Are we all really that cynical about establishing peace. While Modi might have "dropped in", anyone who believes the plane just landed at a moments notice is fooling themselves. Obviously the top brass were aware he was coming. His visit doesn't solve our problems(notice how i used the word OUR) but it sets a precedent for the secretarial talks that are coming up next year. Lets focus on positively solving the issues that would help each other( Trade, visas, tourism etc) and the ones that are harder to solve(sir creek, kashmir, terrorism etc) in due course. Unless the Indians and Pakistani's themselves dont want the Berlin wall to fall down they will continue to see each other as enemies rather than brothers.

Javed Dec 29, 2015 02:41am

@Maxx This must a deliberate attempt to show Afganistan as India's neighbor? Looks like India is too obsessed with Afghanistan,its poeople more than its own. Looks so strange.

Javed Dec 29, 2015 02:56am

@lafanga It is a "bridge too far" for Modi.

Javed Dec 29, 2015 03:36am

@Amanraj Then who is stopping India? Charbahar will be economic challenge, undoable in the long haul. Look at the map, the land route (from India nearest port in Gujrat or Mumbai) to ship,unloading from ships to trucks, 300 miles trucking into Afghanistan. The cost and time to market? Get it? And Pakistan route, 275 miles from Lahore to Peshawar (Turkhum), less than 8 hours ? Get it still? Pakistan is indispensable in this trade and CPEC is totally independent of Indian influence.

Al Dec 29, 2015 05:24pm

This is another ploy by India since it knows perfectly well that it cannot gain access to Afghanistan and central Asia without Pakistan. India is not pakistan's friend and has been responsible for terrorism inside pakistan, thus, there should be zero access given to India unless kashmir and other issues are not resolved first.