India not interested in proxy war in Afghan: Shyam Saran
New Delhi: Referring to Pakistan's concerns
over India's involvement in reconstruction work in
Afghanistan, a special envoy of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh
on Saturday said India was not in the business of having a proxy war
in the conflict-torn nation.
"We are not in the business of having some kind of a
proxy war in Afghanistan or carving out a base for ourselves,"
Shyam Saran said here.
Saran, who steps down from his post tomorrow, said
India's role in Afghanistan was limited to humanitarian issues
and providing relief, economic reconstruction and facilitating
human resource development there.
"We do recognise that unless these kinds of needs of the
Afghans are not met there is always a chance that there would
be a relapse into chaos and great distress," said Saran, a
former foreign secretary.
He was speaking at the inaugural Fletcher South Asia
Pakistan High Commission official Syed Zulfiqar Gardezi,
who also participated in the colloquium, contended that as
Afghanistan's immediate neighbour Pakistan must have a say in
the discussions on Afghanistan.
Responding to the contention, Saran said "I do not think
it is legitimate for any country to start defining its
interests in a manner which transcends borders and has a veto
on what is happening on the other side of the border."