RAWALPINDI: Informed circles here [Rawalpindi] maintain that the resolution voted by the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee calling for suspension of US assistance to Pakistan until the conflict in East Pakistan was resolved was tantamount to the use of threats to Pakistan and interference in its internal affairs. No official comment on the implications of the resolution was available today [May 7] as its text had not yet reached here. But it was apparent that it has caused strong resentment in informed quarters.

Pakistan’s position on the issue had already been explained to the Senators by Pakistan’s Ambassador in Washington, Mr Agha Hilaly, in separate telegrams before the resolution was passed. In effect, the resolution will have no force until it is approved by the Senate and is accepted by the US President.

[Meanwhile, as reported by agencies in New Delhi,] India is still considering recognising the ‘provisional government of Bangla Desh’ in East Pakistan ... Prime Minister Indira Gandhi told a meeting of opposition party leaders here she was in touch with all friendly countries on this question, the sources said. They quoted her as saying it was not fear of attack from Pakistan or China which held India back from recognising the secessionist government but several other implications of such a move. Political observers feel Mrs Gandhi is afraid that recognition of Bangla Desh might encourage separatist tendencies inside India itself.

Published in Dawn, May 8th, 2021

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