ISLAMABAD: While thanking world leaders who congratulated him on assuming office, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif on Thursday responded to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a notably restrained manner on X (formerly Twitter).

The premier’s succinct message, “Thank you @narendramodi for felicitations on my election as the Prime Minister of Pakistan,” mirrored Mr Modi’s own coolly worded congratulations a few days prior, marking a clear contrast to their interactions from April 2022.

The exchange comes after the US said it would welcome productive and peaceful talks between India and Pakistan.

When PM Shehbaz first took office in 2022, the exchange between the two leaders was characterised by a hopeful tone regarding normalisation of ties between the two countries.

Mr Modi had then extended hearty congratulations to Mr Sharif and underscored a willingness for normalisation while also pointing out concerns over terrorism.

Mr Sharif’s reply at the time was equally warm and conciliatory, thanking Mr Modi for his felicitations and advocating for the peaceful resolution of conflicts to foster socio-economic development.

He further sought meaningful engagement in a subsequent letter to Mr Modi, where he emphasised the importance of addressing bilateral issues, including the Kashmir dispute.

The latest exchange has, meanwhile, taken on a notably cooler tone on social media.

A day earlier, US State Department Spokesperson Matt­hew Miller — while commenting on the congratulatory message from Mr Modi to PM Shehbaz — had said: “We… welcome [PM Modi]’s statement. The United States values its relations with both India and Pakistan, and we want to see them have a peaceful and productive relationship.”

Published in Dawn, March 8th, 2024

Opinion

Editorial

Price bombs
17 Jun, 2024

Price bombs

THERE was a time not too long ago when the faces we see sitting in government today would cry themselves hoarse over...
Palestine’s plight
Updated 17 Jun, 2024

Palestine’s plight

While the faithful across the world are celebrating with their families, thousands of Palestinian children have either been orphaned, or themselves been killed by the Israeli aggressors.
Profiting off denied visas
17 Jun, 2024

Profiting off denied visas

IT is no secret that visa applications to the UK and Schengen countries come at a high cost. But recent published...
After the deluge
Updated 16 Jun, 2024

After the deluge

There was a lack of mental fortitude in the loss against India while against US, the team lost all control and displayed a lack of cohesion and synergy.
Fugue state
16 Jun, 2024

Fugue state

WITH its founder in jail these days, it seems nearly impossible to figure out what the PTI actually wants. On one...
Sindh budget
16 Jun, 2024

Sindh budget

SINDH’S Rs3.06tr budget for the upcoming financial year is a combination of populist interventions, attempts to...