Kochi: Pakistan Premier Imran Khan’s visit to Russia amidst the Ukraine war has kicked up a controversy which possibly points towards beginning a new relationship that may even impact India.
Though many countries have slighted Imran’s visit happening at wrong time due to its poor diplomatic foresight, Pakistan has sported an innocent look claiming it to be a trip planned long back.
India for one cannot afford to sit complacent of getting continued support from the Kremlin as Russia is no longer the nation which it used to be one offering unconditional support decades back.
It was the Nehru Government’s pro left tilt that had laid the foundation for the long lasting relationship between the two countries. It was need of the time for the Soviet Union to maintain a give and take relationship with India due to its global untouchability.
The relationship was so strong that India had taken part in the 1980 Moscow Olympics boycotted by all the pro US countries including Pakistan which realised its folly later.
Pakistan was also smart enough to realise its mistake of arming the Mujahideens with the US missiles to fight against the Soviets in Afghanistan in the late seventies and early eighties.
On the other side, the rightist BJP government getting closer to the US has caused a slight vedge in India-Russia ties. Also the diminishing trade between India and Russia has made Russia sulk.
The Pakistan-Russia ties are gaining strength in the last few years similar to the one the Islamic Republic has with the Communist China.
Russia conducted military exercise with Pakistan in 2016 ignoring India’s appeal to suspend it post Uri strike. Russia’s participation in Pakistan Stream Gas pipeline, Russia getting free access for to Pakistan’s Gwadar port in the Arabian sea are enough to prove the growing friendship between the two.
This is certainly a matter of concern for India as Russia shares a strong relationship with the Chinese who are equally closer to Islamabad.
It remains to be seen the stand of Russia in the event of any misadventures by China to expand its empire by targeting nearby countries.
India’s stand in favour of Russia on the Ukraine issue in the United Nations has certainly hurt the US and its allies and it is likely to reflect on India post Ukraine war.
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