Following in the footsteps of Neville Chamberlain, Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh again betrayed the Indian people at Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, in pious hope of trying to buy peace from Pakistan Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani who is known to have no real control over the Pakistan military and its Inter Services Intelligence [ISI]. Dr Singh is reported to have relied upon a new Pak dossier on Pakistani investigations of 26/11 to make a U-turn without appreciating that Pakistani courts may not find adequate proof therein. And Gilani also may not be able to rein in the Pak military and the ISI.
On July 30, 2009, the Times Now TV channel demolishing the very basis of the Sharm el-Sheikh hopes of Dr Manmohan Singh reported that as per information available with the Maharashtra ATS the Pak ISI has directed the LeT to recruit more young Indian Muslims through the Indian Mujahideen and the Students Islamic Movement of India [SIMI] for more terrorist strikes in Maharashtra, which is a Congress-NCP-ruled state. Should Indian people rely on ATS findings or on fantasy and daydreams of PM?
At Munich, Neville Chamberlain, the then British PM, had surrendered the Czechoslovakia’s sovereignty to Hitler in pious hope of buying durable peace which only stoked further appetite of Hitler leading to the Second World War.
After the jehadi attack on Mumbai [26/11/2008] by ten Pakistani terrorists sponsored by Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba [Let], the UPA government has been making brave statements to the effect that formal bilateral talks with Pakistan shall not be resumed till  a credible action was taken by Pak to bring perpetrators of the Mumbai attack to justice; and,  credible actions were taken by Pak to dismantle infrastructures of terrorism in Pakistan from where attacks on India take place. But without these two objectives having been achieved Dr Manmohan Singh in the joint statement issued at Sharm el-Sheikh on July 16 agreed to delink action by Pak against terrorism from resuming composite dialogue. But in face of stiff criticism of this joint statement as a sell-out to Pakistan, Dr Manmohan Singh told the Indian Parliament on July 17:
“I also conveyed to Prime Minister Gilani that sustained, effective and credible action needs to be taken not only to bring the perpetrators of the Mumbai attack to justice, but also to shut down the operations of terrorist groups so as to prevent any future attacks. It has been and remains our consistent position that the starting point of any meaningful dialogue with Pakistan is a fulfilment of their commitment, in letter and spirit, not to allow their territory to be used in any manner for terrorist activities against India”. PM repeated these in the Parliament on July 29.
But gist of statements of Dr Manmohan Singh made before the Parliament on July 17 and July 29 strangely finds no reflection in the joint statement of July 16. How is it that if Dr Manmohan Singh had really spoken to Gilani on the above lines these found no place in the joint statement? Were Indian officials accompanying the PM so naïve as to ignore these substantive policy matters personally conveyed by one PM to another PM?
Shri Shiv Shankar Menon, the outgoing Foreign Secretary, feeling the heat of criticism told the media that the joint statement was poorly drafted, and, Shri Shashi Tharoor, Minister of State for External Affairs, came out with another childish explanation that the joint statement was only a diplomatic document and not a legal document so it was not binding on India.
The transcript of media briefing done by SS Menon at Sharm el-Sheikh on July 15 [which is posted on the MEA website] shows that Menon had long meetings with Pakistan Foreign Secretary on 14th and 15th July so it is evident that the text of the joint statement was settled with the Pakistan side by none other than Menon. Now Menon claims that it was poorly drafted. No wonder Shri Yashwant Sinha rightly demanded sacking of Menon. Such embarrassments to a PM become due when a Foreign Secretary is appointed not on merits but on considerations of coterie and connections.
At Shimla  Smt Indira Gandhi despite the Indian Army having decisively defeated the Pakistan Army surrendered all the strategic advantages secured by the Indian Army to wily ZA Bhutto on Bhutto’s insincere promises and in her own pious hope of establishing ‘durable peace’ with Pakistan. Shimla agreement was hailed by sarkari journalists as a bold step, a new page in history of India-Pak relations, etc. At that time I as a probationer had asked Shri PN Haksar as to how durable peace will be which he was trying to achieve but he gave no reply. It was shocking that in search of elusive durable peace Indira Gandhi relied upon a verbal commitment of Bhutto to convert the Line of Control in J&K into an international border by legally completing merger of Pak-occupied Kashmir into Pakistan. A Prime Minister of India asked Prime Minister of defeated Pakistan to de jure gobble up Indian territory. It was pure and simple surrender at Shimla by India. After all the Indian position has been that entire J&K is Indian territory.
At the Havana NAM Summit in September 2006 Dr Manmohan Singh had also got carried away by insincere promises of Gen Musharraf and agreed with Gen Musharraf to resume formal peace negotiations that were frozen after the July 11, 2006 train blasts in Mumbai. With much fanfare in the press they decided to put in place an India-Pakistan anti- terrorism institutional mechanism to identify and implement counter-terrorism initiatives and investigations. Did this help India prevent further terrorist attacks on India after September 2006 by Pakistan-based terrorists? At Sharm el-Sheikh Dr Manmohan Singh again committed the same mistake of too quickly trusting Gilani which he had done at Havana in trusting Musharraf.
The joint statement of September 16, 2006, issued at Havana reads: “The two leaders met in the aftermath of the Mumbai blasts. They strongly condemned all acts of terrorism and agreed that terrorism is a scourge that needs to be effectively dealt with. They decided to put in place an India-Pakistan anti-terrorism institutional mechanism to identify and implement counter-terrorism initiatives and investigations.” But this mechanism failed to prevent 26/11 attack on Mumbai in 2008.
The July 16, 2009 joint statement too promises that India and Pakistan will share real time credible and actionable information on any future terrorist threats. Since the ISI is believed to aid and abet terrorism in India the Indian intelligence community has been rightly objecting to such stipulations as transmitting intelligence to Pak government will harm Indian interests by compromising Indian assets in Pakistan.
Following are five objectionable extracts [A, B, C, D and E in italics] from the joint statement of two Prime Ministers of July 16, 2009 issued at Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt: