ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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TRADITIONAL RITUALS-Abuse with a Purpose

break-up of countries or threats to their territorial integrity.
Will India take advantage of the agreement with China to ease tensions with Pakistan or will the hawks in our policymaking circles see this as an opportunity to lean harder on Pakistan? Comments in the media do raise the totter possibility. lndian policy-makers may well choose to see the agreement with China as improving India's bargaining position vis-a-vis Pakistan without addressing the real issue of widening Indian strategic thinking to focus on US-western efforts to paralyse our space, missile and nuclear programmes, for which Indian foreign policy has to be freed of its exaggerated fears of an Islamic threat. The prime minister's visit to Iran, shortly after that to China, is important in this context. The defence ministry has openly expressed its fear that "modernisation and expansion of the Iranian armed forces presents the possibility of Iranian assistance to Pakistan in a future situation of conflict''. One hopes that the prime ministers Teheran visit will help to put relations with Iran in a more positive perspective. In the talks the two countries referred to "certain pressures'' on them and the need for regular exchange of views and for inter- national action to deal with these pressures.

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