'Green Revolution thawed India-Pak ties' - The Times of India CHANDIGARH: While fight against hunger in South Asia is a big challenge today, threatening geopolitical stability of the region, cooperation amongst the neighbouring countries to fight poverty has time and again helped in keeping the nations engaged in the peace process. India laid the foundation on this principle by exporting wheat seeds to Pakistan in 1978 to usher in improvement in relations just after India and Pakistan fought over Bangladesh. This was revealed here on Friday by the then Union agriculture minister Sujit Singh Barnala, now Tamil Nadu governor. "Nobel laureate Norman Borlaug approached me saying Pakistan had an acute shortage of wheat seed and India, that saw a bumper crop then, could meet the shortage. I immediately said yes but wanted a go ahead from the then prime minister Morarji Desai," Barnala told The Times of India in an exclusive interview. "Borlaug, an old acquaintance, immediately talked to Desai, who rang me up in the evening asking if India had sufficient stocks of wheat seed and I said we had plenty," the octogenarian leader said. Within couple of days Pakistan's food minister contacted Barnala and said that 1,000 metric tonne of seed were required. But India doubled the quantity on the condition it would be taken through Wagah border. Pakistan agreed to the proposal and that is how the first fruit of the Green Revolution reached Pakistan to germinate seeds of trust for cooperation and better relationship. This step of India coincided with the then external affairs minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee visiting Pakistan, first after 1971 war, to initiate friendship again.