Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif is likely to visit India next month, the Times of India reported quoting sources.“Both sides are in touch to facilitate meetings for him with Indian leaders, including Indian PM Narendra Modi, in the last week of January,” the paper reported.Further, the report added that after approval from the Indian government, the Punjab chief minister has been invited by the management committee of the Nizamuddin Auliya shrine to take part in the death anniversary of the 13th century Sufi saint. Confirming the invite, Nizamuddin chief khadim Tahir Nizami told the Times of India that Shahbaz had visited the shrine several decades ago as well. “While Shahbaz is said to have accepted the invite, both countries are looking to use the opportunity to further the purple patch they seem to have hit in bilateral ties,” the report added. “The visit could be used by both countries to expand the ambit of the composite dialogue process which was resumed recently under the new name of Comprehensive Bilateral Dialogue,” it added.
Shahbaz’s visit will come after Indian foreign minister Sushma Swaraj’s visit to Pakistan. During her visit, Swaraj after a meeting with the premier’s senior aide Sartaj Aziz announced that the fresh dialogue process will likely have additional components apart from those mentioned in the composite dialogue. One important addition, according to both sides, is going to be religious tourism.