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On the evening of 20th February 1999, just after Atal Behari Vajpayee, the Indian prime minister landed at Atari on the India-Pakistan border to meet Pakistani prime minister Nawaz Sharif, Outlook magazine decided to change its cover headline. The Indian weekly newsmagazine, of which I am managing editor, had delayed printing its issue to accommodate the historic meeting. After all, a right-wing Hindu government, known for its hard line on Pakistan, had embarked on a conciliatory trip to Lahore. Veterans of the 1947 partition felt that a return to Eden was at hand. Our cover headline was: “Historic Breakthrough.”


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