If there was a theme that dominated the first day of the Indo-Pak business conference, was the four-letter word: visa. Speakers from both sides of the border were at pain to point out that MFN, FDI would remain useless acronyms unless businesspersons from either side could meet each other easily.
Speaker after speaker quoted 'shayari' to buttress the fact that India and Pakistan need to trade more with each other. Pakistan PM Gilani quoted a couplet he had penned in college in Lahore. Adi Godrej quoted Alexander Pope and Sunil Munjal, his uncle. Einstein and Edmund Burke found mention too.
Missing 'K' Word
Conspicuously absent at the most high-profile meeting of businesspeople from India Pakistan ever, was the 'K' word. Nobody uttered it. The businesspersons naturally didn't say it. But neither did the high profile politicos and bureaucrats present. It does look as though Indo-Pak relationship will finally enter two-track mode with the economic track running independently of the political one.
What is the potential size of the Indo-Pak trade in the near term? Depends on your optimism and how you can spin the numbers. Speakers came up with figures ranging from $5-billion to $10-billion , $12 billion to the massively optimistic $15-billion . For the record, the current figure stands at $2.7-billion .
Wednesday, May 09, 2012
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The News on Sunday Special Report: India Pakistan prisoners more editions
We probably didn't need to do this Special Report. Newspaper stories don't matter when it comes to Indians in Pakistani jails and vice versa. In fact, 'vice versa' sums it up. We do to them what they do to us.
Except when the two countries decide to begin talking, yet again! This time a little before the foreign secretary level talks, some Pakistani prisoners were released by India (and vice versa must have happened) and some more were release....read more
For the past 2 years the Jang Group and Geo have been working on a project of great national interest; one that we hope will help usher in an era of peace and prosperity in the country and indeed, in the region. And one that hopefully all Pakistanis can be proud of. more
The Jang Group has entered into an agreement with the Times of India Group, the largest media group of India, to campaign for peace betw