India has never stopped trade relations with Pakistan. He wants to move towards normalizing trade relations. India’s Deputy High Commissioner to Pakistan Suresh Kumar made the remarks while speaking at the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) on Friday.

India has not stopped trade with Pakistan

Suresh Kumar said that India always wants good relations with Pakistan because we cannot change our geography. We want to move towards normal relations with Pakistan. We didn’t even stop trade with Pakistan because Pakistan did. It would be better to see how we can change our problems and situations.

Talks will be held in a terror-free environment

In 2019, after Pakistan suspended bilateral trade with India and expelled its High Commissioner in Islamabad, India revoked the special status of Jammu and Kashmir. India has said that it wants normal neighborly relations with Pakistan, while claiming that it is Pakistan’s responsibility to create an environment free of terrorism and hostility.

Increase the number of visas issued to Pakistanis

Data shows that trade with Pakistan stood at USD 329.26 million in 2020-21 and USD 830.58 million in 2019-20. Kumar agreed that there has been a decline in the number of visas issued by Indian embassies to Pakistanis during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, he insisted that the numbers have now gone up. Because 30,000 visas are being issued every year which is a ‘huge number’.

Suresh Kumar said that the Government of India is also providing medical and sports visas to Pakistanis. Gone are the days when the focus was on compilation of political reports. Today’s diplomacy revolves around tourism, trade and technology. India currently trades USD 120 billion with China, with a trade balance in favor of China. Kumar insisted that imports are not always wrong. It has its advantages too.