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NDA MPs meet President, slam Indo-Pak joint statement

Last Updated: Tuesday, July 28, 2009 - 17:18

New Delhi: The India-Pakistan joint statement signed in Egypt was against the "national consensus" that there should be no talks until Pakistan takes concrete action against terrorism, BJP leader LK Advani said Tuesday after meeting President Pratibha Patil along with NDA parliamentarians.
"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 told reporters after calling on 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 the Lok Sabha said the joint statement, issued after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh met his Pakistani counterpart Yousuf Raza Gilani 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.

Some 180 people were killed when terrorists laid siege to various places in Mumbai during November 26-29. India blamed Pakistan for the attack.

According to Advani, the inclusion of Balochistan in the joint statement amounted to acceding to Pakistan`s allegations of India`s hand 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."


First Published: Tuesday, July 28, 2009 - 17:18
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