Modi to review MFN status to Pakistan; ministry denies reports
NEW DELHI (92 News) – After failing in cancelling the Indus Water Treaty, the Indian government now is deciding whether to withdraw Most Favored Nation (MFN) status of Pakistan. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has called a meeting with top officials on Thursday for a review.
India is debating a series of steps to pressurize Pakistan after the September 18 attack on an army base in Indian-held Kashmir’s Uri, in which 18 soldiers were killed.
India granted “Most Favored Nation” status to Pakistan in 1996. The term means that the country granted the status receives equal trade advantages.
If the government withdraws the move, the impact will be mainly symbolic because bilateral trade between the neighbors represents a fraction of India’s overall goods trade.
Earlier, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, on the advice of his advisers, decided not to review the Indus Waters Treaty with Pakistan, but decided to expedite work on three dams in order to stop the water of the Chenab River.
The decision was made during a meeting to review the Indus Waters Treaty on Monday. The dams – Pakal Dul, Sawalkot and Barsa – would be constructed as per the decision.
They are of the view the Indus River originates from China, not India, and it will be deprived of 36 percent of water if it diverted the Indus River.
Moreover, China holds the control of the Brahmaputra River, which is the most important source of water for India.
Previously, Indian military commanders warned Prime Minister Narendra Modi regarding military action against Pakistan.
This was stated during a high-level meeting chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The meeting was attended by Indian Interior Minister Rajnath Singh, Defense Minister Manohar Parikar, National Security Adviser Ajit Doval, Indian Army Chief General Dilbir Singh and other high-ranking civil and military officials.
During the meeting, Indian prime minister and defense minister asked for options regarding aggression against Pakistan. General Dilbir Singh said that Pakistan army has raised its defensive posture along the Line of Control (LoC).
He said that he held meetings with Field Commanders and also visited the Line of Control (LoC) himself, adding that any adventure against Pakistan would be dangerous for India itself.
As the issue of reviewing MFN status to Pakistan rose in the media, the Indian Trade Minister said that dined media report in this regard.