Will it work?
India and Pakistan on Monday began formal discussions on investigations into the terror attack at the Pathankot air base, making it the first-ever visit of a five-member Joint Investigation Team (JIT) from the neighbouring country that included an ISI official. Although the Pakistani team will be given limited access to the Indian airbase, there are certain questions that the Modi government must answer. Pakistan has provided no assurance of action, yet their team has been allowed to investigate the Pathankot terror attack (in India). Does the move of allowing Pakistani investigators in India imply that the Pakistan government has had no involvement in spreading terror in India? Earlier, a six-member Special Investigation Team (SIT) was set up by the Pakistani government to carry out an initial probe into the case based on the leads given by India. The previous SIT’s contention that no evidence was found against Masood Azhar and Jaish-e-Mohammed for their alleged role in the Pathankot had indicated Pakistan's unwillingness to dismantle these terror networks. What New Delhi expects from the JIT is anyone’s guess. “The ball is, therefore, in (Indian Prime Minister) Modi's court. He may well give Pakistan more time, but it is doubtful if he will be able to show that his Pakistan policy has persuaded Pakistan to turn its back on terror,” writes Vivek Katju, a retired Indian diplomat and an old Pakistan hand. “Will he then proceed to engage Pakistan despite its calibrated use of terrorism? The Foreign Secretary hinted so though he did not elaborate on the nature of the engagement. More explicitly, can the proposed Comprehensive Bilateral Dialogue go hand-in-hand with terrorism?” One hopes that given more time, Pakistan can be expected to deliver. But many remain skeptical.