NEW DELHI: Amid an ongoing political row over US President Donald Trump's recent claim that Prime Minister Narendra Modi had requested him to mediate in the Kashmir issue, Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Wednesday said that there was no question of any outside mediation on Kashmir.
Speaking in Lok Sabha, Singh said, ''There was no discussion on Kashmir in the meeting between US President Donald Trump and Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Japan recently and there is no question of any mediation on the issue.''
Seeking to allay Opposition fears, the Defence Minister said, ''As S Jaishankar Ji (External Affairs Minister) said Kashmir issue was not discussed in President Trump and PM Modi meeting. There is no question of mediation in Kashmir issue as it will be against the Shimla Agreement.''
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh in Lok Sabha: As S Jaishankar ji (External Affairs Minister) said Kashmir issue was not discussed in President Trump & PM Modi meeting. There is no question of mediation in Kashmir issue as it will be against the Shimla agreement. pic.twitter.com/pdopP9P98U
— ANI (@ANI) July 24, 2019
The veteran BJP leader added that any future talks with Pakistan will focus not just on Kashmir but also on PoK.
Ruling out US mediation, the Defence Minister said that ''it is a question of national pride for India.''
Singh made these remarks amid a walkout by the Opposition which has been demanding a statement from PM Modi himself.
US President Donald Trump had on Monday triggered a political storm by saying that Prime Minister Modi had asked him to play the role of a mediator on Kashmir.
Trump said Modi had sought his intervention in the Kashmir issue during talks in Osaka on the sidelines of the G20 Summit.
However, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar clarified in Parliament on Tuesday that Prime Minister Modi had made no such request to the US President.
Earlier on Wednesday, Opposition MPs, including Congress, TMC and SP, entered the well of the house and raised slogans, demanding the PM to issue a statement in Parliament on the matter.
Leader of the Congress in Lok Sabha, Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury alleged that PM Modi is silent on the issue.