Lance Naik Hanamanthappa Koppad, a brave heart who was retrieved from the depths of the Siachen avalanche which killed nine Indian soldiers, passed away today around 11:45 in the morning. Following his demise, Pakistan High Commissioner Abdul Basit said that it was high time India and Pakistan resolved the issue.
Speaking to reporters on the matter, Abdul Basit said, “These tragedies only reinforce the need to resolve this issue urgently through peaceful means – through dialogue. And you will recall that our Prime Minister addressed the UN General Assembly session last year. He made a specific proposal to let both Pakistan and India withdraw troops from Siachen. So, we strongly feel that the time has come to ensure that more lives are not lost due to harsh conditions in Siachen. We sincerely hope that the issue of Siachen would be treated in an urgent manner between our two countries and we would be able to resolve this problem through peaceful means.”
Though this contentious issue of Siachen might be alleviated by the two countries working together, many are of the notion that Pakistan is trying to usurp the mountainous region through ‘peaceful’ negotiations. Albeit this tragic incident might provoke a revaluation of safety for Indian soldiers in Siachen, there is little guarantee that actual withdrawal of troops will take place.