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Pakistan to allow India’s Afghanistan aid to pass through

Context:

  • One month after India offered humanitarian assistance to Afghanistan, Pakistan’s Prime Minister said that his government would allow the aid to transit over the land route through Pakistan.
  • India had protested the delay in Pakistan’s permissions for the aid to be facilitated, including most recently at the 8-nation Regional Security Dialogue on Afghanistan in New Delhi, which had ended with a declaration that called for assistance to be ‘unimpeded’.

Relevance:

GS-II: International Relations (India’s Neighbors, Foreign Policies affecting India’s Interests)

Dimensions of the Article:

  1. About the transit of aid to Afghanistan
  2. Afghanistan–Pakistan Transit Trade Agreement
  3. Radcliffe Line

About the transit of aid to Afghanistan

  • India offered to supply the 50,000 tonnes of wheat as humanitarian aid via the Wagah land border crossing with Pakistan in October 2021. However, Pakistan did not respond positively to the move.
  • India had protested the delay in Pakistan’s permissions for the aid to be facilitated, including most recently at the 8-nation Regional Security Dialogue on Afghanistan in New Delhi, which had ended with a declaration that called for assistance to be ‘unimpeded’.
  • Even a Taliban delegation that recently visited Islamabad had raised the issue of allowing the shipment of the wheat with the top Pakistani leadership.
  • After this the Pakistan Prime Minister announced Pakistan’s decision to allow the wheat India has offered to provide Afghanistan as humanitarian assistance to go through Pakistan as soon as modalities are finalized with the Indian side.

Afghanistan–Pakistan Transit Trade Agreement

  • The Afghanistan–Pakistan Transit Trade Agreement (also known as APTTA) is a bilateral trade agreement signed in 2010 by Pakistan and Afghanistan that calls for greater facilitation in the movement of goods amongst the two countries.
  • In 2017, the President of Afghanistan announced that The Afghanistan and Pakistan Trade Agreement (APTA) has expired, and issued a decree banning Pakistani trucks from entering the country via the Torkham and Spin Boldak border crossings.
  • The 2010 APTTA allows for both countries to use each other’s airports, railways, roads, and ports for transit trade along designated transit corridors.
  • The agreement does not cover road transport vehicles from any third country, be it from India or any Central Asia country.

Radcliffe Line

  • On 17 August 1947, the borderline that separated India from Pakistan, known as the Radcliffe Line was revealed.
  • The Radcliffe line is spread through the Rann of Kutch in Gujarat till international border in Jammu in Jammu & Kashmir, dividing India and Pakistan into two different countries.
  • The Radcliffe line divided India into 3 parts: India, East Pakistan and West Pakistan.
  • This border line is today the international boundary between India and Pakistan on the western side and between India and Bangladesh on the eastern side.
  • Before independence, it was decided to partition India into India and Pakistan for the Hindu and Muslim communities respectively.
  • The provinces of Sindh and Baluchistan with an overwhelming majority of Muslims (more than 70% and 90% respectively) were granted to Pakistan.
  • The provinces of Punjab and Bengal only had a marginal majority of Muslims. Punjab had 55.7% of Muslims and Bengal had 54.4% Muslims. Even though Muhammad Ali Jinnah wanted these provinces to go to Pakistan in their entirety, the Congress Party did not agree considering the feelings of the Hindu and Sikh populations.
  • It was decided to cut through these provinces and give portions to both countries.

-Source: The Hindu

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September 2022
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