The former prime minister believed that Nawaz Sharif was implicated in the conflict by the Pakistani army, led by General Pervez Musharraf, the new book on Vajpayee’s tenure at the helm of business in India reads
Former Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee and Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif spoke to each other at least four to five times during the course of the Kargil War, the former contradicting the view that Mr Sharif had been bamboozled by Pakistani Army led by General Pervez Musharraf into the conflict.
A new book on the late Prime Minister’s tenure at the helm of India in India, entitled “Vajpayee: The Years That Changed India” by former bureaucrat Shakti Sinha, who served as Vajpayee’s private secretary for many years, including serving as prime minister (PMO)) During the conflict, it goes on to say that communications were maintained following an incident between Mr Sharif and RK Mishra, the former head of the Observer Research Foundation (ORF), the man selected for feedback on the conflict to end.
“… Sharif’s position was difficult, and in a later meeting he indicated to Mishra that they should go for a walk in the garden, apparently with the suspicion that his own house was being tapped. When Mishra reported this to Vajpayee, Vajpayee took it as an indication that Sharif was more of a prisoner of circumstances than anything, ”the book says. “Vajpayee must have spoken to Sharif four to five times in the month and a half from mid-May to July 4 when the Pakistani Prime Minister publicly pledged to President Clinton that Pakistan would withdraw its forces on his side of the LoC,” the book said States.
One such call came from Srinagar in mid-June after Vajpayee visited Kargil. “When he arrived in Srinagar, Vajpayee asked me to connect him with Sharif. My little team and I tried, but we just couldn’t get through. Then one of the local officials present told us that voting for Pakistan (+92) from Jammu and Kashmir was prohibited. The telecommunications authorities have been asked to open the facility for a short time so that the two prime ministers can speak to each other, ”the book says.
A major factor in the withdrawal of Pakistani troops from the LoC, according to the book, were also two telephone recordings that Arvind Dave, chief of the Research and Analysis Wing (R & AW), India’s external intelligence agency, brought to Prime Minister Vajpayee. “Arvind Dave, the R&W chief, made two phone calls between the chief of the Pakistani army, Pervez Musharraf, and his chief of staff, Lt. Gen. Mohammad Aziz. It was clear that the Pakistani army was involved, with the mujahideen playing a subordinate role, if at all, ”the book says. The tapes were later shared with the media, but were also smuggled back to Pakistan for Mr Sharif through diplomatic channels together with the diplomat Vivek Katju and the person RK Mishra.
The book encompasses the premiere of Vajpayee and the very eventful years it encompassed from the perspective of insiders and full of such bon mots that were previously unknown.