Indo-Pak Statement: NDA MPs Meet Prez, Term it against Concensus

After a meeting with President Pratibha Patil, BJP leader LK Advani has said that the Indo-Pakistan joint statement signed in Egypt was against the “national consensus” of no-talks with the neighbour till concrete actions on terrorism are taken.

“By signing the joint statement, the government has accepted that the talks with Pakistan would continue whether it (Pakistan) would take concrete steps against terrorism or not,” Advani said.

He was speaking to media after a meeting with the president at Rashtrapati Bhavan to discuss the government’s “capitulation” to Pakistan on terrorism and other foreign policy issues.

The leader of the opposition in Lok Sabha, Advani said the joint statement signed in the Egyptian town of Sharm-el-Sheikh was contrary to the consensus arrived at after the Mumbai terror attack.

“After the Mumbai attack, the national consensus had been achieved in and outside the parliament that till Pakistan does not do proper investigation, even unlimited talks are of no use,” he said.

It should be noted that some 170 people were killed in last year’s Mumbai terror attack for which India blamed Pakistan.

Advani said that the inclusion of Balochistan in the joint statement adds up to Pakistan’s charge of Indian involvement in the troubled region.

The protest came a day ahead of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s statement on the India-Pakistan issue in parliament.

The joint statement states: “Prime Minister Gilani mentioned that Pakistan has some information on threats in Balochistan and other areas.

“Both Prime Ministers recognised that dialogue is the only way forward. Action on terrorism should not be linked to the composite dialogue process and these should not be bracketed. Prime Minister Singh said that India was ready to discuss all issues with Pakistan, including all outstanding issues.”

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