Washington: President Barack Obama has ended years of “veto power” wielded by Pakistan in Afghanistan over India’s active involvement in the country post-Taliban, a US expert on South Asia has said.
Because of Pakistan’s stiff resistance and opposition to involve India in any way in Afghanistan that the Bush Administration was literally prevented to take any move to include New Delhi as part of its regional strategy on Afghanistan, Deepa Ollapally, Associate Director of George Washington University’s Sigur Center for Asian Studies, said in a Congressional testimony on Afghanistan.
“So far, the US Government has refrained from including India in regional political efforts in Afghanistan, basically bending to Pakistan’s sentiments. India has obviously not been happy with this state of affairs, but it has pushed ahead with development assistance instead,” she said in her testimony before the National Security and Foreign Affairs Subcommittee of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee.
“The new plan that was announced by Obama on 27 March, which will include an international contact group which will have India involved, I think is a step in the right direction,” she said.