The Imran Khan-led Pakistan government is actively considering appointing a National Security Advisor to revive backchannel diplomacy with India to iron out issues hindering the resumption of peace talks between the two nuclear-armed neighbours, official sources said on Sunday.
The likely appointment of the NSA is meant for reviving the backchannel diplomacy with India to sort out some of the pressing issues between the two nuclear-armed neighbours, the official sources privy to the development was quoted as saying by the Express Tribune.
He said certain names were under consideration but no final decision has been taken yet.
The relationship between the two neighbouring nations currently is at all-time low after a Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) suicide bomber attacked a CRPF convoy in Pulwama in Jammu and Kashmir on February 14 that killed 40 soldiers.
Now, with the almost two-month long election exercise getting over, the Pakistan government is considering options on how to resume talks with India.
Pakistan believes that the new government in India after the general elections would be more receptive to Khan's offer of peace talks.
When asked about the prospects of resumption of talks given the current hostilities, the official said Pakistan was optimistic.
The reason for this optimism stems from the fact that new government, whether it is formed by the ruling BJP or the Congress, is unlikely to follow the pre-election rhetoric, he said.
One of the options include the appointment of the NSA to revive the backchannel with India.
In the past, the two countries often used backchannel through the NSAs to prepare ground for any talks.
The two held meetings in Bangkok leading to the agreement between the foreign ministers of both countries for the resumption of the composite dialogue.
The leadership of the two countries used their respective NSAs to communicate on important issues.
Talking to foreign journalists last month, Khan had said that there might be a better chance of peace talks with India if Modi returned to power.
"If the next Indian government is led by the opposition Congress party, it might be too scared to seek a settlement with Pakistan over Indian-occupied Kashmir (IoK), fearing a backlash from the right," the prime minister told a small group of foreign journalists in an interview.
"Perhaps if the BJP a right wing party wins, some kind of settlement on Kashmir could be reached."
Khan's statement stirred a heated debate both in Pakistan as well as in India, where Modi's opponents mocked him as Pakistan's ally.
In Pakistan, opposition parties criticised Khan for making an 'undiplomatic statement' and also supporting Modi despite his hostile policies.