M A I N   N E W S

Manmohan Singh has a dream
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, January 8
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh today fervently hoped that relations between India and Pakistan become so friendly that an atmosphere of trust is generated whereby the two neighbours agree on a Treaty of Peace, Security and Friendship.

Unveiling his vision of regional integration for the first time, Dr Singh hoped one could have beakfast in Amritsar, lunch in Lahore and dinner in Kabul.

Alluding to the "interlinked destinies" of the people of South Asia, the Prime Minister drew attention to an increasingly globalised and integrated world in which "political borders are no longer economic and social barriers. I dream of a day when while retaining our respective national identities, one can have breakfast in Amritsar, lunch in Lahore and dinner in Kabul."

Addressing the 79th Annual General Meeting of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry here, Dr Singh reminisced about a harmonious past when easy regional access was part of everyday reality. "That is how my forefathers lived. That is how I want our grandchildren to live," he observed.

He envisaged a more fast track economic integration of South Asia and underlined the need for increased interaction between the business leaders of India and Pakistan.

"I hope Indian and Pakistani business leaders as indeed business leaders from the region as a whole will strengthen the hands of the political leadership in promoting peace, security and friendship in our region."

The Prime Minister stressed about the enormous opportunites for promoting mutually beneficial cooperation in South Asia and exhorted countries of the region to work sincerely in controlling the scourge of terrorism and extremism.



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