Sunday, May 19, 2024

PM Modi Declined Imran Khan’s Midnight Call After Balakot Strikes : Ajay Bisaria’s Book Anger Management

Bisaria also shares insights into India's attempt to bring back Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman, who was captured after downing a Pakistani jet. India proposed sending an Indian Air Force aircraft for Varthaman, but Pakistan denied permission, citing the sensitive optics.

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New Delhi, January 09, 2024 : In the wake of India’s Balakot strikes in 2019, former diplomat Ajay Bisaria reveals some intriguing details in his upcoming book, ‘Anger Management: The Troubled Diplomatic Relationship Between India and Pakistan.’ The book sheds light on the aftermath of the Balakot strikes and the diplomatic exchanges that followed.

After the Balakot strikes, several countries, including China, offered to send special envoys to mediate and ease tensions between India and Pakistan. Ajay Bisaria discloses that India declined these offers, emphasizing a different approach to handling the situation.

Bisaria also shares insights into India’s attempt to bring back Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman, who was captured after downing a Pakistani jet. India proposed sending an Indian Air Force aircraft for Varthaman, but Pakistan denied permission, citing the sensitive optics.

Even China offered to send its deputy minister to both countries for de-escalation talks, but India politely refused. Bisaria recalls a midnight call from Pakistani High Commissioner Sohail Mahmood, stating that PM Imran Khan was eager to talk to PM Modi. However, Modi was unavailable, and Imran Khan did not convey any urgent message.

Bisaria mentions that after India’s air strikes in Balakot, the ambassadors of the US, UK, and France were briefed by Pakistan’s foreign secretary about potential missile threats from India. Diplomats recommended Pakistan convey its concerns directly to India.

Bisaria credits India’s “coercive diplomacy” for the successful resolution of the crisis. Imran Khan eventually announced Pakistan’s readiness to de-escalate, act on India’s dossier, and address terrorism concerns. The pilot, Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman, was returned to India the following day.

The book also touches on regional geopolitics, revealing that Imran Khan sought China’s support against India, but Chinese President Xi Jinping declined, emphasizing that China wouldn’t prop up Pakistan against India. Jinping advised Khan to improve relations with the US and Afghanistan for Pakistan’s benefit.

“Later, Prime Minister Modi emphasized in a campaign speech, ‘Fortunately, Pakistan announced that the pilot would be sent back to India. Else, it would have been a night of bloodshed, qatal ki raat.'”

Ajay Bisaria’s book provides valuable insights into the complex diplomatic dynamics between India and Pakistan during a critical period.

The Indian Bugle
The Indian Buglehttps://theindianbugle.com
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