A peace Nobel for Imran Khan can wait, the Pakistani leadership must first stop lying on support to terror.
Asking for a Nobel Peace prize for Pakistani prime minister Imran Khan would have required a rather rare form of lack of shame on the part of the Pakistani information minister Fawad Chaudhry. You could be kind and think, perhaps, the minister bought the Pakistani propaganda about peace overtures in the latest conflict with India hook, line and sinker. But it is more likely that, given the stakes involved, he had to go the whole hog in trying to project Imran Khan’s stance—and indeed, Pakistan’s—as one of peace-preserving, and thus, there was no room for even a soupcon of shame. Even if that meant being revoltingly blasé and outlandish and beg for a Nobel for Khan, so be it. Khan, thankfully, showed trace amounts of grace, saying that he is not worthy of the prize, but the prize should go to someone who works for a peaceful solution to the Kashmir problem, keeping in mind the wishes of the Kashmiri people.
If that be the bar, the Pakistani side might as well give up any Nobel dreams. Whether or not you believe it was the Indian government’s aggressive military and diplomatic tactics that forced Pakistan to plead for peace, it is impossible to deny that Pakistan’s military and civilian leadership has, for decades, undermined any scope of a peaceful solution to the Kashmir question. Its support to terrorist groups—the Pulwama attack has exposed its forked tongue on terrorism to the world—its role in fomenting trouble in the Valley through hawkish and ‘moderate’ separatists, etc, suggest no individual or regime from Pakistan has ever been interested in a peaceful solution. On the other hand, AB Vajpayee, Manmohan Singh and Narendra Modi, all extended the hand of friendship, only to be spat at. Pakistan’s lies have caught up with it time and again—from the Mumbai terror attack investigation to the US military raid that killed Osama binLaden, there are enough instances of Pakistan’s duplicity getting exposed. Peace Nobel is a rich demand, Pakistan must first assure the world that it no longer dishes out sheer bull on supporting terror.