Republic TV on Wednesday spoke to the Senior Fellow for India, Pakistan and South Asia region for the Centre of Foreign Relations Alyssa Ayres. Ayres spoke about how Pakistan is not the top issue for India in the global platform. She also said that there is a lot of sympathy for India in the world's eyes as its efforts to extend an olive branch to Pakistan were betrayed by the through terrorist attacks against the country. Read her conservation with Republic TV's Editor Niranjan Narayanswamy.
When asked about what she was looking forward to in PM Modi's speech, Alyssa Ayres said that India had a number of issues ranging from Climate Change to terrorism. She said that these are among the many topics that are likely to be addressed by PM Modi but Pakistan is not on the top of the list of international agenda for India. "I hope that the PM's speech does cover the range of issues that are important to India, globally and not simply the Kashmir issue which undoubtedly will come up. I think that any Indian leader would feel obligated to offer some kind of reply given the important emphasis that Pakistan has been placing on this issue, but I do think that India's international ambitions are much larger than simply the very tough issue of Pakistan," she said
"This is a big challenge for India. I think on the one hand to have two countries that live next to each other. That both have nuclear weapons. I mean you can see right away and of course the potential for escalation. Something that is very worrisome to the world. This is worrisome to the people in India and worrisome to the people of Pakistan too. So it would be better if there could be some kind of an ongoing dialogue between India and Pakistan but I think people have also seen over the years that these many efforts by the successive Indian governments whether it is the former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee or whether it was then Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh, then Prime Minister Narendra Modi, you've had successive recent Indian governments to hold out their hand in friendship only to find there is some terrorist attack that takes place to suggest that the talks were for not.
"So I think there is a lot of sympathy on that count. On the other hand to the degree which can be a limited dialogue and a way to at least have a channel that prevents escalation, you want to have a way to at least keep citizens safe and secure and that would be something that I would hope people are pursuing. Even in closed back channels," he said.