The 1972 Simla Agreement

October 11, 2021

This Agreement shall be subject to ratification by both countries in accordance with their respective constitutional procedures and shall enter into force from the date of exchange of instruments of ratification. [4] On July 2, 1972, former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi signed the shimla agreement with then Pakistani Prime Minister Zulfikar Ali Bhutto. Hoping to salvat a deal, Bhutto phoned Gandhi directly. During this meeting, Gandhi stressed the main advantage of the Indian proposal on Kashmir – neither side was obliged to physically abandon the territory or exchange populations. With “sentiment and apparent sincerity,” Bhutto admitted that if India`s proposal was the only viable one, a formal legally binding commitment would significantly weaken its domestic political position and strengthen the military establishment. He could give more than an oral assurance that the de facto border in Kashmir would gradually gain the “characteristics of an international border,” as Bhutto put it. On the other hand, India`s concession was concrete and in advance. India abandoned its “comprehensive solution by agreeing to withdraw troops from the international border before reaching an agreement on Kashmir.” The summit between Bhutto and Indra Gandhi opened in Simla at the set time. The Simla Agreement Conference was held from 28 June to 2 July 1972. U.S. President Donald Trump`s recent statement on plausible mediation in the Kashmir dispute — between India and Pakistan — has once again shed light on the 1972 shimla agreement. The agreement was the result of the two countries` determination to “end the conflict and confrontation that have so far affected their relations.” It designed the measures to be taken to further normalize mutual relations and also defined the principles that should govern their future relations. [4] [5] [3] The immediate result of the 1971 war between India and Pakistan was the change of government in Pakistan and Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, the majority leader of West Pakistan, took power on December 20, 1971.

The 1971 war led to the dismemberment of East Pakistan. Pakistan had lost nearly 54 percent of its population and 93,000 of its soldiers and civilians were held by India. Therefore, the first challenges of the new government were to resolve the state of emergency and resolve the prisoners of war problem as quickly as possible. After the war, India and Pakistan were in direct contact through diplomatic channels and both recognized the need to start negotiations. From 12 January 1972 to 30 April 1972, the two countries showed their propensity for dialogue through press releases and talks were opened at the first level. Finally, it was agreed that talks between the President of Pakistan, Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto, and Indra Gandhi, Prime Minister of India, would begin on 28 June 1972. Indira Gandhi`s reputation for clever state art is widely praised, even by her most virulent critics. Their quest for peacemaking was as bold as India`s approach to the 1972 peace conference in Shimla shows.

But the fall of 1972 is fascinating for what it did not reflect – India did not use the fruits of the 1971 war victory to achieve a beneficial geopolitical arrangement. Finally, for the first time since the partition of a position of strength and prestige (prisoners of war), India negotiated with Pakistan; 93,000 Pakistani prisoners of war, including the entire military leadership in eastern Pakistan, surrendered to Indian forces. India had also conquered strategic locations in Kashmir and 5,000 square miles of Pakistani territory in Sindh and southern Punjab. On July 2, 1972, the two countries reached an agreement. The main clauses of the Simla Agreement are as follows: Gandhi eventually emerged as a swing factor between enforceable and accommodating attitudes in the Shimla final. The alternative of calling Bhutto`s bluff and leaving without a deal was deemed too costly for Gandhi and Haksar after India`s dramatic triumph of 1971. . .

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