New Delhi/Dharamshala: After China protested in strong terms India's decision to allow Uyghur activists to come to India to meet Dalai Lama, the Congress on Saturday said leading Chinese dissident Dolkun Isa was not like Jaish-e-Muhammad chief Masood Azhar.
Notably, India's decision to issue visa to Dolkun Isa, a leader of World Uyghur Congress (WUC) who lives in Germany, is seen as a response to Beijing's move to block Indian bid to get Masood Azhar banned by the UN.
China regards World Uyghur Congress leaders as backers of terrorism in its volatile Muslim-dominated Xinjiang province.
The Congress Party on Saturday said that Tibetan leaders meeting Dalai Lama is of a very different nature to what has happened in the case of Pakistan-sponsored, and now almost Chinese-sponsored terrorist against India.
"Azhar Masood`s case is very clear. He is a terrorist. China is only playing games and only wants to assist Pakistan in its anti-Indian operations. Masood has openly declared his anti-India intentions. He states that he is involved in terrorist operations against India," Congress leader Sandeep Dikshit told ANI.
"Tibetan leaders meeting Dalai Lama is of a very different nature to what has happened in the case of Pakistan sponsored, and now almost Chinese sponsored terrorist against India," he added.
Dolkun Isa has been invited to a conference being organised by the US-based Initiatives for China.
Uyghurs and other Chinese dissidents in exile are expected to attend and discuss democratic transformation in China.
Meanwhile, the organiser of the event, Tenzin Ninjey, said that China is wrong in calling him a terrorist.
"Dolkun Isa is a peace activist. There is no comparison at all with terrorist Masood Azhar," he told ANI.
China`s unhappiness about reports that Dolkun has been given the visa was reflected in Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying's statement: "What I want to point out is that Dolkun is a terrorist in red notice of the Interpol and Chinese police. Bringing him to justice is due obligation of relevant countries."
When asked about the issue, Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) official spokesperson Vikas Swarup said on Friday, "We have seen the media reports and external affairs ministry is trying to ascertain the facts."
External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj last week strongly raised with her Chinese counterpart Wang Yi the issue of China blocking India`s bid to have Masood Azhar designated as a terrorist by the UN.
Swaraj took up the issue with Wang at a bilateral meeting in Moscow on the sidelines of the Russia-India-China (RIC) trilateral meeting of their foreign ministers.
(With Agency inputs)