Pakistan parties go to polls with India-friendly manifestos

The historic national elections in Pakistan on May 11 — the first after any elected government completed a full term — will be fought on India-friendly manifestos. All the major parties — Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz), Tehreek-e-Insaf and Pakistan People's Party — have promised peace and trade with India.

Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz)

Led by former PM Nawaz Sharif

>> LINK TO AFGHANISTAN: Will "link India with Afghanistan and CAR (Central Asian Republics) and provide land route from Iran to India and access to the Central Asian

Republics to the Arabian Sea and India for oil/gas pipelines".

>> INTROSPECTION: Foreign policy and National Security chapter explains the failures of Pakistan as a state.

>> FOREIGN POLICY REJIG: Will take "advantage of assets and opportunities" of the country to conduct "a thorough and comprehensive review of our national security and foreign policy".

>> BETTER INDIA TIES: In a clear reference to India, promises "a policy of normalization with countries with which we have differences, so as to seek their resolution by peaceful negotiations, with the objective of establishing cordial and cooperative ties... , especially (with) our neighbours". Also, "special efforts" to resolve Kashmir issue.

Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf

Led by cricketer Imran Khan

>> NEW PAKISTAN: New entrant in the traditional contest between the PML-N and PPP on the national scene. The party's primary emphasis has been on the reconstruction of a new narrative for the development of Pakistan.

>> IMPROVED INDIA TIES: Part of the party's New Pakistan manifesto. "A progressive detente with India will benefit both countries if centred on conflict resolution and co-operation,

especially in the field of energy."

>> AGAINST ARMS RACE: If voted to power, the party has promised to "move substantively on the bilateral strategic dialogue with India encompassing all aspects of the strategic nuclear deterrence so as to prevent a spiraling nuclear arms race in the region".

... contd.

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