Pakistan PM warns India against retaliatory action

Pakistan PM Imran Khan warns India against retaliatory action

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Tuesday assured India that action would be taken against the perpetrators of the Pulwama attack if New Delhi shares “actionable intelligence”, but warned against any retaliatory action on his country.

In a video message to the nation, Khan responded to the Indian allegations on Pakistan’s involvement in the attack in Kashmir on last Thursday. The suicide attack by Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) terror group left 40 CRPF personnel dead.

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan addresses the nation on February 19, 2019. Photo: Twitter/@PTIofficial

Stating that Pakistan wants “stability in the region”, Khan said, “If India has evidence or actionable intelligence, they should give it to us and we will take action.”

He said that he has come across calls for attack on Pakistan through the Indian media and warned, “If India retaliates, we will not think and retaliate back.”

“It is easy to start a war but difficult to end it,” Khan said. The premier said, “I want to ask India if they want to live in the past?” “Its not in our interests that somebody from here goes out to do terrorism, nor that somebody comes here and does terrorism,” he added.

He said, “The Kashmir issue, like the Afghan issue, will be resolved through talks.

“If you have any actionable intelligence that a Pakistani is involved. Give it to us. I guarantee you we will take action – not because we are under pressure, but because they are acting as enemies of Pakistan.

“I have been hearing and seeing on the Indian media that politicians there are calling for revenge from Pakistan. If India thinks it will attack Pakistan, then we will not just think but retaliate. Starting a war is in our hands, it is easy. But ending a war, that is not in our hands and no one knows what will happen.

“Its not in our interests that somebody from here goes out to do terrorism, nor that somebody comes here and does terrorism. I say it clearly this is a Naya[new] Pakistan and a new mindset. India talks about including terrorism in dialogue with Pakistan. Terrorism is a big issue facing this region and we want to eliminate it. If someone is using Pakistan’s soil [to carry out terror attacks elsewhere], it is enmity with us. It is against our interests.”

‘Busy with Saudi Crown Prince visit’

Mr. Khan said he did not respond to India’s allegations as he was busy with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s visit to the country.

“India accused Pakistan without any evidence and without thinking how this [attack] would benefit us. Would even a fool try to sabotage such an important visit as that of the Saudi crown prince” he asked.

“We have been fighting against terrorism for the past 15 years. How will Pakistan benefit from such incidents? Kashmiris are not afraid of death anymore. There must be a reason for that. Should there not be a discussion in India on this? Which law in the world allows everyone to become a judge and jury?,” he said.

Questioning whether India “wants to resolve the issue through military”, he said, “This has never been a successful measure.”

Minutes after the address, Mr. Khan’s official Instagram and Facebook accounts posted a picture of him — scowling and cross-armed — along with a message that read: “Don’t mess with my country”. (The Instagram post has now been removed).

Pak. Minister pleads with U.N

Earlier in the day, Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi pleaded with U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres to intervene, saying India was threatening to “use force against Pakistan” and abandon a vital water treaty.

“It is imperative to take steps for de-escalation. The United Nations must step in to defuse tensions,” wrote Mr. Qureshi in a message shared with journalists.

– PTI |19 February 2019 | Islamabad

BJP National Convention 2019: Amit Shah’s speech

Salient points of speech of BJP National President Amit Shah at the BJP National Convention at Ramlila Ground, New Delhi

In the last week alone, the government of Narendra Modi ji has taken two major decisions that have massive implications for future. The first of to these two decisions was providing 10% reservation for the poor from the upper castes in education and jobs.  Prime Minister has got it cleared in the Cabinet and parliament in a manner of less than one week to fulfill the aspirations of crored of upper caste youth in this country. In my view, the 124th amendment to the Constitution giving reservation to the upper caste youth is one of the most significant amendments to the constitution since it was framed.

The second major decision of the government under the leadership of Narendra Modi ji is simplification of the GST and the relief given to the small traders and manufacturers. As per this major decision, small traders and manufacturers with turnover upto Rs.40 lakh are exempt from registration under GST. Likewise, the turnover limit for coverage under the composite scheme has been increased from Rs.1 crore to Rs.1.5 crore.

He called upon the entire parliamentary board of the Bharatiya Janata Party to join him in congratulating and complimenting the prime minister for the truly historic decisions in the last one week.

Describing Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi as the most popular Prime Minister since independence Shri Amit Shah exhorted the delegates attending the national convention to take a resolve and vow to re-elect the Prime Minister with a bigger mandate in 2019. Shri Amit Shah stated that the national convention was to strengthen our resolve to usher in New India as envisioned by Honorable Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Shri Amit Shah said that in a tribute to Swami Vivekananda during his Jayanti, which will be celebrated on January 12, the BJP would implement the vision of Swami Vivekananda. He said that the party would celebrate the party’s victory in 2019 which also happens to be 150th year of Gandhiji’s birth and 500th year of Guru Nanak.

Recalling the contributions of Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee the BJP President stated the this is the first national convention of the BJP when Atal ji is not alive. Atalji provided leadership to the BJP from the Jan Sangh days and recalled how Atal-Advani duo strived to take the BJP to every corner of the country and in establishing it as a national party. Though there is a vacuum after the demise of Atal ji he would always remain with the people and the party as it pursues his goals.

Highlighting the significance of Ramlila Maidan as a venue where the party had resolved to secure a win in 2014 and the venue where the first rally to end the undemocratic Indira Raj after the imposition of emergency, Shri Amit Shah stated that 2019 would also become a significant milestone at the venue for securing outright majority for the BJP.

Shri Amit Shah emphatically stated that a victory in 2019 for the BJP is also important for 50 crore poor people of this country,  for the youth and for women who have suffered neglect under previous Congress dispensations and have not had access to even basic needs. For over 70 years people waited for a leader who would Make India great and Shri Narendra Modi had arrived to fulfill that desire.

Highlighting that the so-called Opposition Alliance has neither a leader nor any positive agenda, he said that the 2019 electoral battle will have an impact that would last for centuries. Underscoring the importance of 2019 battle, Shri Shah drew a parallel with the Great Maratha rulers in pre-British era who won 134 battles but a defeat in Panipat third battle had brought in the British Raj which subjugated India for 200 years.

Recalling the 2014 verdict the BJP national president said the people of this country have given an outright majority to a government after a gap of 30 years. He further stated the BJP was in power in only 6 States when the party secured a majority in 2014 while at present the party is in power in 16 States. Further, he said, the membership of the BJP has risen from 2.4 crores in 2014 to 11 crores at present. Once the party scores a victory in 2019 the party would expand its influence and become a dominant party even in the south of India going as far as Kerala, he added.

Stating the there is no leader to rival the popularity of prime minister Shri Narendra Modi, Shri Shah said that the BJP’s victory in 2019 was certain as the people of the country are with the BJP under the leadership of Shri Narendra Modi. Highlighting the desperation of the so-called grand alliance the BJP President said that the politics is not just arithmetic or physics but produces chemical reactions. Referring to the alliance between Samajwadi Party and Congress party in 2017 UP assembly polls , the BJP President stated that the BJP had secured a massive mandate despite that alliance. He exuded confidence that the BJP would secure over 50% vote and would go on to win at least 74 scenes in Uttar Pradesh in 2019 Lok Sabha polls. Taking a dig at rival political parties that are feeling compelled to come together despite their known rivalries owing to the popularity of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the BJP President said that these attempts would fail.

Reeling out statistics as to how poverty and deprivation remained unaddressed despite the Congress having ruled India for 55 years the BJP President stated howin the last 4.5 years 6 crore women have received free LPG connections , 9 crore households have received a toilet , 2.5 Crore houses have received electricity, 2.5 crore households received free housing under Awas Yojana. Describing Ayushman Bharat as the world’s largest Health Insurance programme, the BJP President said that 50 crore people of the country who could not afford Healthcare are receiving Rs 5 lakh health insurance cover for hospitalization and for other expenses as well.

Highlighting significant improvement in the overall national security scenario, Shri Shah attributed improvements to the security doctrine followed by the Modi government which gave freehand to the armed forces to retaliate every act of provocation and infiltration with a heavy response. Naxalism has also been curbed and the problem has nearly ended, he said. The BJP government had given respect to the armed  forces by fulfilling a long standing demand of the armed forces for One Rank One Pension (OROP), he added.

Unlike the week-kneed response of the Manmohan Singh government in similar situations, our government carried out retaliatory surgical strikes after 16 of our sleeping soldiers were killed in a terrorist attack in Uri, he said. The whole world has started looking at us differently and with more respect after the surgical strikes, he added.

Demanding that the Congress party must make its stand clear on the National Register for Citizens (NRC), Shri Shah said that many opposition parties in Parliament shed tears for illegal immigrants who pose a threat to India’s security. Describing how this problem is eating away our resources like termites, he castigated them for vote bank politics.

Highlighting how India’s image and prestige has enhanced over the last 4.5 years under Modi government, Shri Shah recalled that Shri Narendra Modi was asked to inaugurate Davos summit though leaders from India never received such honour in the past. He also noted as major achievements the International Yoga Day, UN Champion of the Earth award for the PM Modi and India’s contribution to the deliberations in Paris Climate Summit.

Lambasting the corrupt rule of the Congress party before 2014 which looted Rs.12 lakh crore in various scandals, the BJP President listed various initiatives of Narendra Modi government like the SIT against black money, framing of rules under the benami act, fugitives act demonetisation etc to launch a big attack against black money. By implementing direct benefit transfer (DBT) under various schemes, the BJP government has plugged leakages and insured savings to the tune of Rs.80000 crore, he added.

Describing the Narendra Modi government as a Spotless government, the BJP president stated that the party cadres can hold their heads high for a government of total integrity. Highlighting how the Congress Party continues to indulge in lies and calumny even after the Supreme Court found absolutely no merit in the allegations being made in Rafale procurement and no need for any investigations. Shri Amit Shah has congratulated and complimented finance minister Shri Arun Jaitley and Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman for exposing lies of Rahul Gandhi and Congress Party during the parliamentary debates on the issue. Stating that the Congress Party is getting desperate as the party’s image is tarnished after the revelations by “Mama Michel” and Uncle Quattrocchi. Scare of a big defeat and the immaculate image of the government have made a desperate Congress to resort to lies and Propaganda, Shri Shah revealed.

Shri Amit Shah said that the likes of Vijay Mallya, Mehul Choksi , Nirav Modi who escaped India were in partnership with the Congress Party which allowed them to loot public money and that they would never have fled India had the Congress been in power. Because “chaukidar is holding everyone by the neck, they felt compelled to flee. Modi ji’s government will ensure that they return to India and payback everything they looted from this country with the Congress party’s collusion and help.

Source – 11 January 2019/ New Delhi

Naidu-Rahul talks may fortify anti-BJP alliance

Naidu-Rahul talks may fortify anti-BJP alliance

Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu’s decision to meet Congress president Rahul Gandhi (Naidu-Rahul talks) in New Delhi on Thursday was taken at a meeting of Ministers available in Amaravati and senior party leaders over lunch on Wednesday.

One Minister was stated to be sceptical about going with the Congress but Mr. Naidu had overruled him. It would be the first time Mr. Naidu is holding a direct dialogue with Mr. Gandhi, though they greeted each other at the swearing-in of H.D. Kumaraswamy as Karnataka Chief Minister in Bengaluru on May 23.

This is Mr. Naidu’s second visit to Delhi in a week with a heavy political agenda. He is scheduled to meet NCP president Sharad Pawar, CPI(M) General Secretary Sitaram Yechury and National Conference leader Farooq Abdullah. The meeting with Mr. Gandhi may take place at Mr. Pawar’s residence. Giving a big push to his efforts to form a broad non-BJP front, former Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav telephoned him on Tuesday night to extend his support to his efforts.

In the meeting with Mr. Gandhi, he is expected to discuss ways of bringing together all non-BJP parties on a single platform ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.

Image result for Naidu-Rahul talksThis is Mr. Naidu’s second visit to Delhi in a week with a heavy political agenda. He is scheduled to meet NCP president Sharad Pawar, CPI(M) General Secretary Sitaram Yechury and National Conference leader Farooq Abdullah. The meeting with Mr. Gandhi may take place at Mr. Pawar’s residence.

Giving a big push to his efforts to form a broad non-BJP front, former Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav telephoned him on Tuesday night to extend his support to his efforts.

He is believed to have told Mr. Naidu that it was the right time to fight the BJP and the “autocratic style” of Prime Minister Narendra Modi “that has resulted in the collapse of all institutions.”

On Saturday, Mr. Naidu met Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, BSP leader Mayawati, CPI General Secretary S. Sudhakar Reddy and Loktantrik Janata Dal leader Sharad Yadav, besides Mr. Abdullah.




By Anwar Alam 

The recent UGC Academic Audit Report on the Aligarh Muslim University, AMU has drawn the national attention towards its malfunctioning, notwithstanding the din over its recommendation of dropping the word “Muslim” from its name. While the bulk of secularists and Muslim intelligentsia might see the report as another “Hindutava instance” against the Muslim community, it did provide a good opportunity to critically reflect upon the state of affairs in the two premier Muslim educational institutions of India: the AMU and the Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI). Though there has been a nationwide discussion and recommendations to uplift the educational plight of the Muslim community since the publication of Sachar Commission Report (2006), discussion on the functioning of wholly public-funded Muslim educational institutions has been rare. The hegemonic discourse of exclusion and practice of Indian secularism has further insulated the internal functioning of these institutions from wider public scrutiny.

AMUOriginated as a community project with vastly different trajectory (AMU: communal-separatist; and JMI: nationalist-secular), today both these institutions are Central University. Baring nomenclature of Central University, both these institutions differ vastly with other Central Universities in terms of exercise of power, style of functioning, objectives and historical mandate. These institutions did produce a generation of “educated Muslims” and contributed towards the formation of sizable Muslim middle class in post-Independence period, but without any competitive edge and national-modern outlook. Their participation and success rate in national opportunity structure is abysmally low, not on account of any institutionalised discrimination, but due to a lack of motivation, low participation and poor quality of education. Behind their failure to evolve as quality academic institutions lies a combination of factors.

First, as “hunger” for education among the Muslim community has surpassed other communities in India and a large number of Muslims desire to seek a quality education in a Muslim environment whereby the preservation of Muslim culture, religion and tradition can be assured, there is a sheer mismatch between the capacity of these two universities to perform and cater to ever increasing number of students. The AMU is the largest residential university with a capacity of approximately 30,000 students, while JMI has roughly around 15,000-17,000 students. The system of education ranging from nursery to Ph.D, ever increasing student intake, every day pulls and pressure emanating from the community structures, the pressure to draw teachers from “Muslim pool”, all combined have made these two Muslim premier institutions unmanageable and inefficient.

The second crucial factor is the feudal moorings of decadent Ashraf Muslim elite and the middle class that has historically shaped and controlled the power-structure of these Muslim institutions. As a result, these institutions remained feudal in orientation and ethos and the same are reflected in almost all dimensions of academic life of both the universities, particularly about the relationship between their Vice Chancellors and the rest of the university. While all universities, whether State or Central, suffer from “VC syndrome”, its degree of discretion and arbitrary exercise of power is much greater in these two universities. Part of the reason for “heavy centralisation of academic life” lies in the tradition of appointment of bureaucrats as Vice Chancellors in these universities, a practice hardly followed in other Central University. Both universities have dubious distinction of having military officer as Vice Chancellor in the recent past!

The third structural problem of these universities is their gradual transformation into a symbol of collective Muslim identity. The politics of Ashraf, the silence of the secular Government, the impact of identity-centred Islamicist movement within and outside India, the alleged growing threat of Hindutava and widely held perception among large section of Muslims and secularists that these institutions are the only hope for imparting education to the Muslim children as outside opportunities for the same has dwindled — all combined have pushed the “Ashraf-dominated Muslim politics” to secure the goal of declaring these institutions as “minority institution”. The process got intensified against the backdrop of collapse of Ashraf leadership following the demolition of Babri Masjid and later the announcement of 27 per cent OBC reservation in Central educational institutions, which appeared to threaten Ashraf dominance in these institutions. Today both AMU and JMI have acquired a semi-legal status of “minority institution” (doing away with OBC reservation) subject to the final outcome of the court ruling.

The “process of minoritisation” of these two Muslim Central Universities will have a far-reaching adverse implication on the academic health of the university in the future. First, in demanding official recognition of these institutions as “minority institution” despite

being wholly public funded, the “Muslim politics” in the country further strengthened its gradual trend of moving from one of “politics of minority right” to “politics of minoritism”. The latter contributed to the development of politics of majoritarianism.

Second, an academic degree of minority institution without any brand value will be considered of a lower value in the national market. Hence career prospects of students have greatly been compromised. Third, the more the process of “minoritisation” of academic life in these universities, the more gheottisation of academic life will take place. Fourth, it will strengthen the communal forces within the community. Finally, with hardening of Muslim identity, its educational goal has taken a back seat. The paradox is that while educational institution is expected to uphold constitutional values of democracy, secularism, nationalism and pluralism and produce democratic citizens, the thrust, orientation and moorings of these universities stand opposite to these constitutional values. After all, Pakistan came out of the womb of the AMU. A university with such inward outlook will never produce the national and universal values and affect the capacity of its students to compete at the national and global market.

The fourth structural problem begets from a kind of relationship between the Government and these educational institutions. The Government and large public sphere tend to see these two educational institutions primarily as “Muslim educational institutions” and symbols of Muslim identity. One consequence of this process is that Vice Chancellors of these universities get a larger media coverage and retains their public visibility not on account of their scholarship or being administrative head but on account of being perceived as an important representative of Muslim community. Aware of the positional advantage of office of Vice Chancellorship of these universities, some of ambitious Vice Chancellors make the political use of their office and the university to further their political interest. Unlike other Central Universities, the past precedent of becoming President, Vice President, Governor, Lt Governor, etc, through this route also encourages and inspires the incumbent of this office to move in the same direction. As a result, the attention of the VC gets deflected at the cost of “educational cause”. Academics becomes the secondary issues and most of the attention is geared to buy “peace” at the university through a combination of force, fear and balancing the internal factionalism, which is presented as “orderly academic life” to the outside world.

Moreover, given the competitive electoral democracy, the Government has been normally reluctant to “inspect and supervise” the academic quality of these institutions out of fear that such moves might generate negative repercussion and the Government may lose support among the Muslim community.

As a consequence, these universities internally suffer from massive misuse of “autonomy” of educational institution. This autonomy gives rise to nepotism, corruption, inbreeding, non-transparent functioning of administration, academic inertia and dishonesty and sub-standard academic practices. The AMU has never implemented the mandatory provision of 22.7 per cent SC & ST reservation and 27 per cent OBC quota in admission and appointments of teaching and non-teaching positions without being either legally exempted or being recognised as a minority educational institution to undertake such policy decision. The JMI dispensed the same in 2011 with a claim of being a minority institution as per decision of NCMEI and reserves 50 per cent seats for Muslim students. Moreover, these are the only two Central Universities that have shied away from appointing CVC mandated Chief Vigilance Officer through due process in the name of autonomy!

The role of these two Muslim Central Universities has become more crucial today, as access to quality education has emerged as the most critical criterion for upward mobility. These universities are uniquely poised to cater to the growing educational demands of underprivileged section of the Muslim community and make them capable to compete in the market-driven opportunity structure. This necessitates three interlinked steps: (a) the de-Ashrafisation of Muslim leadership and politics, which has a vested interest in promoting monolithic, identity-centred Islamic discourses (b) “Muslim politics” must shun the “politics of minoritism”; and (C) the Government must treat these institutions primarily as “educational space” rather than “Muslim space”. These two public-funded Muslim educational institutions can serve the interest of Muslim community more effectively through the paradigm of “soft Muslimness” — accommodative of plural-liberal-secular-national identities — than through the prism of “hard Muslimness”, which asserts the politics of exclusive Muslim identity.

(The writer is Senior Fellow, Policy Perspectives Foundation, New Delhi, and former professor of international studies at Jawaharlal Nehru University, Aligarh Muslim University and Jamia Millia Islamia) 

Courtesy: The Pioneer (04 November, 2017)

Trump regime strongly supports the sale of F-18 and F-16 to India

Trump regime strongly supports the sale of F-18 and F-16 to India

The Trump administration has told the U.S Congress that it “strongly supports” the sale of F-18 and F-16 fighter planes to India, built by American companies Boeing and Lockheed Martin respectively. Both companies have offered to assemble these planes in India, should New Delhi decide to buy them. President Donald Trump is in principle against companies relocating facilities abroad and a written submission to a Congressional subcommittee by Alice Wells, acting Assistant Secretary of State for the South and Central Asian Affairs, clarifies the administration’s position on the issue.


U.S lawmakers and bureaucrats in general have been enthusiastic supporters of selling these fighters to India, and are now presenting them as deals that could reduce America’s trade deficit with India and create more jobs in America than they relocate — issues that are top on Mr. Trump’s agenda. Ms. Wells mentioned the strategic significance of defence cooperation with India — “defence cooperation with India is so vital to US interests because we need India to be a net security provider in the Indo-Pacific” — but also added that America needs to do more to reduce the deficit. She added US exports to India support more than 260,000 American jobs “across all 50 states.”

F-16 and Gripen, built by Swedish company Saab, are in competition for the proposed single-engine fighter acquisition for the Indian Air Force. French Rafale and Boeing’s F/A-18 are competing for the contract for Indian Navy’s twin engine fleet for its aircraft carriers. Lockheed Martin and Tata have announced a joint venture to manufacture F-16, while Saab announced a JV with Adani last week for Gripen.

Strategic expert Ashley Tellis recently argued in a paper that F-16 and F-A/18 are the best choices for India in their respective categories. According to him, India will become the hub of Lockheed Martin’s F-16 manufacture for the entire world — there are more countries exploring purchase — and in supporting the 3,200 F-16s that continue to be in service in 25 countries.

The U.S military no longer buys F-16 but the 950-odd F-16s will remain in US Air Force (USAF) service for another two decades, Mr. Tellis said. For F-A/18 the argument has been based more on technological superiority, though Boeing also has offered manufacturing in India and transfer of technology.


After NSG, visa rows, China sends Foreign Minister Wang Yi to India to lower tensions

After NSG, visa rows, China sends Foreign Minister Wang Yi to India to lower tensions

After NSG, visa rows, China sends Foreign Minister Wang Yi to India to lower tensions

 Amid tensions between India and China, Beijing has announced to send Foreign Minister Wang Yi to New Delhi next week for ‘serious’ bilateral talks.

Ties between the two countries have been strained over a number of thorny issues, including the NSG membership, journalists row and visas to Uyghur leaders.

Wang is also likely to discuss India’s participation at the G-20 Summit in Hangzhou, China, which will be attended by PM Narendra Modi from Sep 4-5.

However, Wang’s main purpose of visit is to build confidence after differences emerged between Delhi and Beijing on India’s NSG membership.

Both sides were also at loggerheads over the issue of Pakistan-based terrorist Masood Azhar.

China had vetoed against a ban on Azhar at Pakistan’s behest at the UN.

Confirming Wang’s visit, the Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson, Vikas Swarup said he will hold talks with External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj.

Wang will meet Sushma Swaraj on August 13, Swarup said at a media briefing here.

The visit is “part of the regular high-level dialogue”, he added.

Besides India, he will also visit Kenya and Uganda during his three-nation tour from August 9 to 14, the state-run Xinhua news agency quoted a Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson as saying.

India had recently given visas to Uyghur leaders to attend a conference of Chinese dissidents in Dharamsala while refusing to extend visas to three Xinhua journalists, who are employed by the Chinese government.

Beijing has also been wary of growing Indo-US ties which is being viewed by the ruling Communist Party as attempt to check China.

-August 5, 2016, New Delhi


After Pakistan blacks out his speech, Rajnath Singh skips SAARC lunch

After Pakistan blacks out his speech, Rajnath Singh skips SAARC lunch

After Pakistan blacks out his speech, Rajnath Singh skips SAARC lunch; briefs PM Modi in Delhi

 Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Thursday arrived back in New Delhi after skipping a lunch hosted by his Pakistani counterpart Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan. His scheduled news conference at Delhi airport was also cancelled.

Khan had organised the lunch for the visiting dignitaries, who were here to attend the seventh SAARC Interior/Home Ministers’ conference, and had scheduled it after the main meeting.

However, the Pakistani Interior Minister left the venue immediately after the meeting got over despite being the host of the lunch. Singh then took the decision to skip the lunch.

 The Home Minister later had his lunch at his hotel room along with the members of the accompanying Indian delegation. After the lunch, Singh left for India.

The ongoing strain in Indo-Pak relations was also evident at the SAARC Interior/Home Ministers’ conference here when Singh came face-to-face with Khan for the first time today and the two leaders barely shook hands.

As Singh arrived at the venue of the conference at the posh Serena Hotel here, Khan was at the gate to receive the dignitaries. The two leaders barely touched their hands, not even a formal handshake, before Singh moved ahead to enter the meeting hall.

After returning to India, the home minister said that he would unfold the facts relating to his visit to Parliament.

Evading media pressure, Singh said that he had placed India`s point of view across Pakistan, adding all information can be gathered from his speech which is now in the public domain.

However, the Home Minister briefed Prime Minister Narendra Modi about his visit to Pakistan.

Earlier in the day, Singh, in a strong message to Pakistan, said there should be no glorification of terrorists as martyrs and also called for “strongest action” against nations supporting terrorism.

Without mincing any words, Singh told the Interior/Home Ministers Conference of SAARC countries that mere condemnation of terrorism and terrorists is not enough.

Singh’s comments in his speech came against the backdrop of Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s praise of Burhan Wani who was killed in an encounter in Jammu and Kashmir on July 8 and his description of Hizbul Mujahideen commander as a martyr, much to India`s ire.

“There should be no glorification or eulogising of terrorists as martyrs. There are no good terrorists or bad terrorists,” Singh said.

Shockingly, Singh`s speech during the meet was blacked out. Members of the Indian media, who had come from New Delhi to report on the conference, were not allowed to cover the speech. They were reportedly kept at a distance by Pakistani officials. Some reports said that there was an aggressive verbal exchange between officials of the two sides over the issue. Only Pakistan state PTV was allowed to cover introductory speeches of Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and Interior Minister Chaudhary Nisar Ali Khan. Even private Pakistani media not allowed to cover the event.

Singh arrived in Islamabad yesterday amid protests by supporters of various terrorist groups, including the Hizbul Mujahideen.

-August 4, 2016,Islamabad

Pakistani-Americans urge US to stop India from ”encouraging Baloch separatists”

Pakistani-Americans urge US to stop India from ”encouraging Baloch separatists”

Pakistani-Americans urge US to stop India from ''encouraging Baloch separatists''


Scores of Pakistani-Americans have protested outside the Indian Embassy in Washington against an alleged “Indian intervention in Balochistan”, alleging that New Delhi is encouraging separatists elements there.

According to Pakistani English daily Dawn, Pakistani-Americans from the districts of Columbia, Virginia and Maryland took part in the hour-long protest.

Some of them were even carrying pictures of an alleged Indian spy supposedly arrested in Balochistan.

The protesters claimed that India is encouraging separatist elements in the Pakistani province and urged the US government to use its influence to stop this intervention.

The report said that the demonstration in one of Washington’s busiest areas drew the attention of hundreds of people.

-April 23, 2016,New Delhi