As perhaps the first opposition leader to do so former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah has lauded the Modi govt for its efforts and success in resolving peacefully and diplomatically the two month long Doklam stand-off with China.

Abdullah has said, “It was even more remarkable because it was done without ‘chest thumping’.” But in that same speech made at a public rally, Abdullah also made a strong pitch for resumption of dialogue between India and Pakistan arguing “if India and China can talk, why can’t New Delhi and Islamabad”?

He said both India and Pakistan will have to make a new beginning to recreate mutual trust and understanding an imperative for talks because the people along the International Border and the Line of Control have nightmarish experiences every time guns roar from the other side.

While some have expressed their agreement with the National Conference working President, others have questioned his stand given Pakistan’s relentless export of terror to India and unmistakable role in fomenting trouble in the Kashmir valley.

The question we’re asking tonight is – Is Omar Abdullah right in asking for an India-Pakistan peace dialogue for the sake of the innocent villagers who’re forced to live in constant dread along the border? Or is his argument flawed in that Pakistan isn’t quite China though they may be allies. For one China has not been training, arming, bankrolling and sending terrorists into India to kill our people. Is it a simplistic argument given the complex reality of the vexed India-Pakistan relationship and the sharp spike in instances of terror attacks in the recent past? Or is there merit in what he has proposed?