To further peace process, PM sends envoy to meet Sharif

In a bid to take forward the dialogue process, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Monday sent a special envoy, Satinder K Lambah, to meet Nawaz Sharif, PML-N chief and prime minister designate of Pakistan.

Lambah is PM's special envoy on Pakistan and Afghanistan and has had a good rapport with Sharif that was built over two decades. He was High Commissioner to Pakistan between 1992 and 1995 and his tenure partly coincided with Sharif's first term as PM (1990-93). He has been been involved in back-channel talks for the last 10 years.

"They took the opportunity to discuss ways to take the dialogue process forward, to address all issues of concern and to advance peace, friendship and cooperation," a PMO statement said.

On May 12, Singh had conveyed India's desire to work with Sharif to chart "a new course" in Indo-Pak relations. He had also invited Sharif to India at a mutually-convenient time. This meeting, the PMO said, is a follow up to the conversation between Singh and Sharif. Lambah, 71, also has a personal connect with Pakistan. The 1964 batch IFS officer was born in Peshawar.

Sharif, 63, is set to become Pakistan's PM for the third term on June 5 when the the formal election by members of the Pakistan National Assembly will be held. The PML-N had earlier nominated Sharif for the OM's office after the party won a majority in 342-member National Assembly.

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