Can this global crisis bring the twin states close !

Angry relatives, neighbors, or friends reunite either on happy occasion or in the hour of grief

A deeply rooted rivalry between the two nations reminds meof the very famous and story of Leo Tolstoy " A Spark Neglected Burns theHouse". This particular story revolves round the two themes – hatred andhumbleness.  The first part of the storydeals with the theme of  hatred that ledthe two families into catastrophic situation. In this part of the story, theauthor's noble intention is to teach us the lessons of the horrible consequenceof hatred, arrogance and egotism. The second indispensable theme is humilitythat ultimately saves both the families from the problems. Every sensitivereader while reading the final part of this story takes a sigh of relief and isexcited about its happy ending as both the families finally  reconcile, throw away hatred and make firmaffirmation that they would lead a peaceful life. But unfortunately, the twoneighboring countries – Indian and Pakistan, even sharing the common historypre-Independence believe in the philosophy of hatred. But the ground reality isthat the common masses from either side who became the most effected entitieswant an end to this rivalry and rigidity as early as possible.

The recent initiative taken by the Indian Prime Minister byconducting the video conference of SAARC nations to chalk out a strong strategyto fight coronavirus, is a case in point. During this meaningful deliberationon this grave issue, the representatives of the SAARC countries came out withvaluable suggestions. Though the Pakistani's response to the proposal camelate, but the presence of Pakistani's minister of state for health Zafar Mirzainfused a new ray of hope. Let us hope that these two countries India, Pakistanshow the  political maturity  and place the previous grudges or grievanceaside;  try to restore the sustainablerelationship based on mutual respect, and think peace just for the sake of thecoming generations who are eagerly waiting for a new dawn.

The situation that emerged by this deadly creature –Coronavirus – is a big concern for all of us. But it is also an agreed factthat developing countries like India, Pakistan have numerous other social,economical problem like poverty, malnutrition, poor health condition, highinfant mortality rate etc. The difference is that this deadly coronavirusoccurred suddenly showing its drastic impact within a short span of time whereas the aforementioned problems have been consuming numerous lives from eitherside since decades. This animosity forces them to  spend more on military budget that ultimatelyputs a heavy burden on the general public.

If the present political establishment can't bridge the gap,let the new political thinkers or scientists be given a genuine space inpolitics so that they give new direction, and also sort out the ways to reconstruct new thoughts based on the philosophy of  love, mutual understanding,  tolerance and humility. It would be pathetic if these two countries don't show anywillingness to extend their corporation in this hour of grief. We used tosay,  "Angry relatives, neighbors, orfriends reunite  either on happy occasionor in the hour of grief"; It will be in the interest of the entire region ifthese two states join hands together. Enough is enough!  Remember, "You can change  friends but not neighbors" .

Haroon Rashid Bhat is a teacher- Zone Ganderbal

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