India should end Indus Water Treaty and repeal MFN status: Yashwant Sinha

New Delhi, [India], Sept. 27 : Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) veteran Yaswant Sinha on Tuesday advised the Centre to end the Indus Water Treaty and repeal the Most Favoured Nation (MFN) status from Pakistan.

Sinha said that New Delhi has been giving Islamabad Most Favoured Nation treatment from past 20 years, but Islamabad instead of returning the gesture has resorted to sheer enmity.

"Both of them are very important steps. Few days back through a news paper I had also given this suggestion that we should end the Indus Water Treaty and repeal the MFS status," said Sinha.

"We gave the Most Favoured Nation treatment to Pakistan but Islamabad in the past 20 years has not given India the Most Favoured Nation treatment.

And now when Pakistan has resorted to sheer enmity then it makes no sense that India continues to give Pakistan Most Favoured Nation treatment.

The Indian government very easily can forfeit this tag. I would suggest the Centre to end the MFN," he added. Taking stock of the 56-year old treaty with Pakistan, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday said "blood and water cannot flow at the same time".

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will hold a meeting on Thursday in which the 'Most Favoured Nation' status granted to Pakistan will be reviewed.

Post Uri terror attack, India will now decide whether to withdraw the status to that country. The decision comes a day after Modi held a meeting with top officials to review the Indus Waters Treaty.

Top officials of the Ministry of External Affairs and Commerce Ministry will be in attendance. The review meetings comes after the Uri terror attack in which 19 Indian soldiers were killed, following which India has made it clear that ties with Pakistan will never be the same again.

India has already reiterated its stand of isolating the country globally and has called for nations to follow suit.

Modi consulted with National Security Adviser Ajit Doval, Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar and other top officials to discuss whether a reconfiguration of the Indus Waters Treaty with Pakistan was among the steps that the government should take as a response to attacks from Pakistan.

"Blood and water cannot flow together," the PM had said in the meeting. Sources say the government has kept its option of reviewing the treaty on the sharing of the waters of six rivers with Pakistan open.

India is debating a series of steps to tighten pressure on Pakistan after the September 18 attack on an army base in Jammu and Kashmir's Uri, in which 18 soldiers were killed by terrorists of the Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammad.

India granted "Most Favoured Nation" status to Pakistan unilaterally in 1996 but Islamabad is yet to reciprocate.

The term means that the country granted the status receives equal trade advantages. If the government withdraws the move, the impact will be mainly symbolic because bilateral trade between the neighbours represents a fraction of India's overall goods trade.

Source: ANI