New Delhi: External Affairs Minister SM Krishna on Friday rubbished Pakistan’s claims that New Delhi has not provided concrete evidence against 26/11 mastermind and the founder of Lashkar-e-Toiba (LeT) Hafiz Saeed, and instead asked Islamabad to act against him.
Speaking to reporters, Krishna said, “Through various dossiers, the Home Minister of India has provided to Pakistan concrete evidence against Hafiz Saeed for his role in the planning and execution of 26/11 terror attacks in Mumbai. No denial on their part can exonerate them.”
Krishna, while maintaining that the dossiers contain detail information about his involvement in terror attacks said, “Unless there is a judicial enquiry in Pakistan, responsibility can’t be fixed. Unfortunately the Pakistan government has not felt it proper to investigate this.”
When quizzed whether the issue would be discussed during Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardadri’s upcoming visit to India, the Minister said, “I don’t know if it will be discussed during Zardari’s visit, but still there is a chance."
He, however, upheld that there was no trust deficit in the Indo-Pak bilateral ties and expressed optimism that there are several important issues that can be taken up by the two sides in future.
"From whatever I have gathered in last three years from Hina Rabbani Khar (Pakistan’s Foreign Minister), she told me personally that there is a mindset that has changed in Pakistan and she brings that to India, so I believe her. India-Pakistan bilateral relationship is looking up...eventually it will," Krishna said.
His reaction came a day after Pakistan Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani told the National Assembly that his government cannot take action against Hafiz Saeed in the absence of solid evidence.
Prime Minister Gilani said the matter of LeT founder is an "internal issue" and if there is any concrete proof against the outlawed Jamaat-ud-Dawah chief then it should be provided to Pakistan.
Gilani also cautioned that at a time when Pakistan's Parliament is framing new rules of engagement for the US, such "negative messages would increase the trust deficit".
He made the remarks yesterday while responding to points raised by lawmakers during a joint session of the National Assembly and Senate about the USD 10 million bounty offered by the US for Saeed.
Earlier, Pakistan’s Foreign Ministry also asked India to provide concrete evidence against the LeT founder.
The US Monday announced an award of up to $10 million for information leading to arrest and conviction of Saeed and $2 million for Hafiz Adbul Rahman Makki, under the Rewards for Justice programme, for information on the two terrorists.
First Published: Friday, April 06, 2012, 12:55