Pakistan

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  • Myth of the Monolith: The Challenge of Diversity in Pakistan

    The paper seeks to study the challenges faced by the Pakistani state from the perspective of its vast ethno-cultural diversity which problematises the process of-nation building attempted by the Pakistani leadership since its very inception. The paper starts with a rudimentary definitional view of the concept of ethnicity and nationalism, and isolates the areas of friction in the way the Pakistani nation has been conceptualised and the way diverse ethno-cultural groups have evolved their identity through history

    January 2005

    Iran-Pakistan Relations: Political and Strategic Dimensions

    Iran-Pakistan relations have had a distinct characteristic over the past five decades and Islamabad’s clandestine transfer of nuclear technology and materials to Iran underlines its significance. Political and strategic imperatives have formed the basis of their close relationship despite divergence of interests and political outlook on regional and global issues. Both the countries have tried to reconcile the differences and consolidate their ties.

    October 2004

    The 9/11 Report: Reaffirming Pakistan-Terrorism Nexus

    The 585-page National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States Report that investigated the plot, design and circumstances leading to the 9/11 attacks on the US has highlighted the dangers of organised terrorism in threatening global peace and security. The same threat has been reiterated in the recent Beslan tragedy in Russia. It is clear that terrorism has acquired global dimensions and has emerged as a fundamental concern for the international community.

    July 2004

    Attack on Sheikh Hasina

    On August 21, 2004, a little before 5.30 in the evening, there was a grenade attack on the Awami League leader, Sheikh Hasina Wajed. This occurred soon after she concluded her speech in a public rally close to the Awami League headquarters in Dhaka, which ironically was held to protest the recent grenade attacks in Sylhet. 11 of the 13 grenades hurled at the rally exploded instantly followed by indiscriminate firing fortunately missing the target, Sheikh Hasina, as she was hurriedly escorted into her bullet-proof car. The impact left 18 dead and hundreds wounded.

    July 2004

    Iranian Nuclear Programme and Pakistan: Implications of the Linkages

    Against all odds, Iran is pressing hard to prove its nuclear innocence and keeping its promises under the provisions of the Nuclear Non- Proliferation Treaty (NPT). The US is refusing to go along with Iran’s denials on violation of the NPT commitments. At the same time, the Bush Administration seems determined to stop the spread of nuclear weapons beyond Pakistan to other Muslim states. However, the facts emerging out of the probe into the A.Q. Khan episode and the international grey nuclear market indicate significant patterns of concealment and duplicity even by the NPT signatory states.

    July 2004

    Pakistan’s ‘Sustainable Democracy’: Army as the Political Architect

    Any study of political developments in Pakistan cannot be complete without examining the role of the Army. Though it might seem incompatible to talk of military and democracy in the same breadth, Pakistan provides an example of how the military has been able to govern the country as successfully as a civilian government. It has its own view of democracy, political stability and governance. It feels it has a political role which stems from the national security paradigm of the state.

    April 2004

    Indo-Pakistan Talks 2004: Nuclear Confidence Building Measures (NCBMs) and Kashmir

    After six years, in June 2004 India and Pakistan resumed the composite dialogue process that covers eight baskets of issues agreed upon in Male in 1997 between Prime Minister Inder Kumar Gujral and Nawaz Sharif. The eight baskets are Jammu and Kashmir; Siachen; Wullar Barrage/Tulbul Navigation Project; Sir Creek; Terrorism and Drug Trafficking; Economic and Commercial Cooperation; Peace and Security; and Promotion of Friendly Exchanges in various fields. The last round of talks was held in October 1998 in Islamabad, on Peace and Security, CBMs and Jammu and Kashmir.

    April 2004

    Sunni-Shia Relations in Pakistan: The Widening Divide

    The sectarian divide between the Sunnis and Shias in Pakistan has widened since the 1980s. The rising tide of sectarian violence during Musharraf’s rule (October 1999-till date), in spite of bans and restrictions imposed on sectarian outfits and elements by the administration, suggests that the two sects have drifted further apart.

    January 2004

    Reducing Nuclear Dangers after the AQ Khanspiracy

    The essay defines Pakistan’s brazen retailing of sensitive nuclear technologies as Bomb Process Outsourcing (BPO) and places it in a larger perspective. It offers a short retrospective of the development and manufacture of nuclear weapons by the P-5 in which significant manpower and materials were ‘foreign’. This is true of the programmes of Israel, Iraq, South Africa, Argentina and Brazil as well. Pakistan, has now, contributed to North Korea, Libya and Iran.

    January 2004

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