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Contrast of Pakistan and India

  • Date Submitted: 10/08/2010 04:01 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 55.9 
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Dr. Ishrat Husain, a former World Bank senior official and an ex governor of the State Bank of Pakistan, wrote an article captioned "India, Pakistan: a comparison" at the end of the first five decades of two nations' existence as independent states. To my knowledge, Dr. Hussain has not done an update of his article since it was first published. Although about three years too late, this post is my attempt to present a comparison of the two South Asian nations after sixty years of independence.

Here is the opening paragraph from Dr. Husain's article from the late 1990s, which I believe still stands true today:

"India and Pakistan are completing five decades of their independence. Since the partition, the relationship between the two countries has been uneasy and characterized by a set of paradoxes. There is a mixture of love and hate, a tinge of envy and admiration, bouts of paranoia and longing for cooperation, and a fierce rivalry but a sense of proximity, too. The heavy emotional overtones have made it difficult to sift the facts from the myths and make an objective assessment. There are in fact only two extreme types of reactions on each side. Either there are those who always find that the grass is greener on the other side of the pasture or those who are totally dismissive of the accomplishments of the other side."

Not much has changed in the last ten years as far as the above paragraph is concerned. The relationship between the two nations remains as emotionally charged as ever.

Then Dr. Husain's essay talked about what he saw as the common successes of the two nations in the first fifty years:

1. Despite the prophets of gloom and doom on both sides of the fence, both India and Pakistan have succeeded in more than doubling their per capita incomes. This is a remarkable feat considering that the population has increased fourfold in case of Pakistan and threefold in India. Leaving aside the countries in East Asia and China, very few large...

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