Why isn’t NA being taken on board over Kashmir issue?

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PM Imran Khan’s efforts to pressurize India have so far failed to effect any change in Modi government’s stance on the disputed region or towards Pakistan. There is no end to repression in the occupied Valley while India continues to aggressively pursue its jingoistic policy towards Pakistan.

Protests in the valley that took place after PM Khan’s UNGA speech were suppressed by force. Three people were killed on the pretext of being terrorists. India’s Interior Minister Amit Shah meanwhile brazenly maintains that there are no restrictions in IOK. On Sunday mortars fired by the Indian army took toll of a woman and a child in AJK

The PM’s return from the US was celebrated by the PTI as that of a commander coming home after winning a war. At the Islamabad airport reception that was arranged by the party PM Khan declared that Pakistan would stand by the Kashmiris even if the world didn’t, which some are likely to interpret as a recognition of being isolated. In fact, only three countries i.e. China, Turkey and Malaysia supported Pakistan’s position on Kashmir at UNGA.

While PM Khan relished speaking on Kashmir at the airport reception, he neglected the calls to share the results of his efforts as Kashmir’s ambassador with NA. Of course, he addressed the US think tanks, held meetings with President Trump and some of the government heads and delivered a speech before the UNGA. A leader’s performance however is not judged by his efforts but by the results produced.

The way PTI government has violated the rules and traditions of the NA raises questions about its commitment to democracy. Yielding to the pressure of the party leadership, the Speaker has stopped issuing production orders of MNAs, currently under detention, who have not been sentenced so far. There is no logic behind the claim that those demanding their production are in fact seeking the NRO. This has further exacerbated tensions between the government and the opposition. It would help neither PM Khan nor the country to push the opposition to the wall.

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