Islamabad: Home Minister P Chidambaram
tonight met his Pakistani counterpart Rehman Malik and is
understood to have pressed for urgent action against JuD chief
Hafiz Saeed and 26/11 handlers, including those who are
believed to be in the Pakistani Army.
Chidambaram, the first Indian Home Minister to visit
Pakistan in three decades, met Malik at the Interior Ministry
here, where he was accorded a red carpet welcome and given a
ceremonial Guard of Honour.
In a special gesture, Malik went to the Chaklala Air
Base in Rawalpindi and personally received Chidambaram, who
arrived to attend the SAARC Home Ministers` Conference
On their way to the VIP lounge, both Chidambaram and
Malik were seen talking to each other and posed for
During the meeting, Chidambaram, the first Indian
Minister to visit Pakistan after the 26/11 strikes, is
believed to have told Malik that the time has come for
Pakistan to address issues concerning the deadly Mumbai
attacks with seriousness that they warrant.
The Indian Home Minister is also understood to have
sought action against Saeed, whom New Delhi considers as the
mastermind of the 26/11 attacks, and handlers, including those
who are belived to be serving in the Pakistani Army, of the
deadly attack that killed 166 people.
Chidambaram is also believed to have sought voice
samples of the Pakistani handlers and raised issues like
infiltration on the border of Jammu and Kashmir and Pakistanis
who have infiltrated and are indulging in militant activities.
Speaking to reporters accompanying him in the special
aircraft, Chidambaram said he will not say anything that will
cast a shadow on the SAARC Home Ministers` Meeting, which is
primary engagement in Islamabad.
He said he will tell Pakistan "politely, but firmly"
that the time has come to address issues concerning the Mumbai
"I will use the opportunity to bring home to Pakistan
gravity of issues and the need for response that is
appropriate to the gravity of the situation," he said.
"It has been 18 months since I took over. The time has
come to address these issues (regarding Mumbai attacks) with
seriousness that they warrant. That is what I am going to tell
them politely, but firmly," Chidambaram said.
After meeting Malik, Chidambaram will also call on
Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi.
Asked whether he would raise the issue of Hafiz Saeed
with Malik, Chidambaram said: "Hafiz Saeed is one among them.
There are controllers, there are handlers, so we need to know
what action they will take against them. These matters cannot
be ignored for ever. Somebody has to address these issues
sometime or the other."
Asked whether Pakistan had declined to give voice
samples at any point of time, Chidambaram said one of the
dossiers given by Pakistan said a couple of people had
declined to give their voice samples pleading self-
"To me, that is not a legally tenable position," he
Chidambaram said Pakistan can surely give voice
samples of handlers as it is universally acknowledged that
handlers were in Pakistan.
"We think we know who the handlers were. Surely, they
can give us voice samples. We have recordings on our side."
When asked whether India will accept Pakistan giving
voice samples to any third country, he said: "I suggested one
time that don`t give it to us. Give it to a third country so
that it is subjected to forensic analysis in a third country.
Asked whether Pakistani Army personnel were among the
handlers of the 26/11 attackers, he said: "If you are quoting
from the dossier (that India gave to Pakistan) you are quoting
correctly. But I do not know whether they are real names or
Asked whether the handlers included two Pakistani Army
Majors, Chidambaram said: "That is what the dossier said."
On whether he would raise the Headley connection to
the attacks, he said he won`t do it directly.
Hours before the meeting, Malik said he will "satisfy"
the Indian leader on the issue of Saeed.
Malik said "instead of exchanging dossiers" the two
countries should "exchange hearts".
"Hafiz Saeed is an issue. And we will also satisfy Mr
Chidambaram on that. We have no problem in that," Malik told
an Indian television channel, when asked about India`s
insistence to discuss about Saeed.
Malik said the two countries will discuss all issues
with a view to resolve the problems that exist between the two
"I will welcome him to Pakistan. Let us be friends.
Instead of exchanging dossiers, we will exchange hearts," he