Policy towards Pak questioned in Rajya Sabha
The Modi government's policy towards Pakistan on Wednesday came in for questioning in Rajya Sabha with a JD(U) member asking if dialogue will continue in the wake of Pakistan envoy Abdul Basit meeting Hurriyat leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani here on Monday.
New Delhi: The Modi government's policy towards Pakistan on Wednesday came in for questioning in Rajya Sabha with a JD(U) member asking if dialogue will continue in the wake of Pakistan envoy Abdul Basit meeting Hurriyat leader Syed Ali Shah Geelani here on Monday.
Raising the issue during Zero Hour, Pawan Varma, a former diplomat, said the dialogue with Pakistan was discontinued due to ceasefire violations in 2013 but the NDA government decided to resume it in August 2014 even as ceasefire violations continued.
He said the talks were suddenly revived and then also cancelled quickly as despite India's objections Pakistan?s High Commissioner held consultations with Hurriyat leaders.
"Now again under the garb of SAARC Yatra, talks have begun," he said referring to the recent visit of Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar to Pakistan where he met his counterpart Aizaz Chaudhary.
This was the first Foreign Secretary level meeting between the two countries since India had called them off last year after Pakistan's High Commissioner in New Delhi held consultations with Kashmiri separatists.
"Now again Pakistani envoy has met Geelani in his house. Will composite dialogue continue now? What is the policy towards Pakistan? Is is adhoc and impulsive?...What is the strategic policy that the government of India has followed towards Pakistan," he said.
Varma also wanted to know what assurances were given regarding relations with Pakistan when US President Barack Obama visited India during Republic Day.
"We want more clarity on foreign issues," he said holding that foreign policy must be embedded in strategic policy.
A political row has erupted over Basit's meeting with Geelani on Monday during which the two sides had also discussed various developments in Jammu and Kashmir.