Thimphu: Home Minister P Chidambaram
on Saturday had a meeting with his Pakistani counterpart Rehman
Malik, as he said terrorism posed the most significant
"existential challenge" to peace and security in South Asia.
Chidambaram and Malik had their deliberations on the
fringes of the SAARC Interior/Home Ministers meeting--their
second one-to-one interaction since their last encounter in
Islamabad last year on the sidelines of a regional meeting.
Malik said the meeting was "very good" and held in a
very cordial atmosphere.
Issues of mutual interests were discussed, said Malik,
who yesterday described Chidambaram as his "elder brother".
At the SAARC meet earlier in the day, Chidambaram said
terrorism was the "most significant existential challenge" to
peace and security in South Asia and it was the single largest
hindrance to socio-economic development in the region.
The Pakistani Interior Minister while expressing his
intention to meet Chidambaram here said there are a few issues
to be discussed with the Indian leader.
"Well, since we are here, why not we meet? We may
meet," he told PTI yesterday when asked whether he would have
a bilateral meeting with his Indian counterpart.
Interestingly, Malik and Chidambaram travelled
yesterday on the same Druk Air commercial flight from Delhi to
Paro, 56 km from the capital of this Himalayan nation.
Malik said that during his brief interaction with
Chidambaram on the flight he conveyed to him that Pakistan
would be "very happy" to offer any help to India on any issue.
"I have told him that we will be very happy to offer
any cooperation," he said.
Asked what are the issues he would like to discuss
with the Indian Home Minister, Malik said: "He is my elder
brother. I will give him the chance to speak first. Let us see
what is on his mind and then I will respond to that. I have a
few points to discuss but I will not tell you."