Soldiers’ death to delay secretaries’ talks: India

Published August 14, 2013
An Indian army soldier patrols near the Line of Control after reported ceasefire violation, in Mendhar, Poonch district. — File photo
An Indian army soldier patrols near the Line of Control after reported ceasefire violation, in Mendhar, Poonch district. — File photo

NEW DELHI: India on Tuesday gave a clear indication that killing of five of its soldiers on the Line of Control would delay the secretary-level talks with Pakistan, asserting that dialogue could only proceed in an environment free of violence and terror.

It also asked Pakistan to “uphold the LoC’s sanctity”, saying it was the “most important confidence-building measure” between the two countries, The Hindu newspaper reported.

Meanwhile, the Indian external affairs minister said New Delhi was still in a sense of shock over “ceasefire violations by Pakistan” and called for a return to peace and tranquility on the border, according to the Times of India.

“There is a sense of disappointment. We first need to get back to normal. There are other priorities,” Salman Khurshid told reporters on the sidelines of a function.

He was replying to a question after Pakistan said on Monday it had no immediate plans to confer the most favoured nation (MFN) status to India.

“There has to be peace and tranquility on the border. Ceasefire should not be violated. We are still in a sense of shock.”

In his statement, a spokesperson for India’s external affairs ministry said Pakistan should abide by its publicly-articulated commitment made by the newly-elected prime minister to seek a relationship of peace, friendship and cooperation with India and should not allow its territory to be used against anti-India activities.

He was replying to a query over newspaper reports that Hafiz Saeed, the Jamaatud Dawa supremo, led Eid prayers in Lahore.

Asked about India’s stand over the Pakistani proposal suggesting dates for secretary-level talks, he said India did receive last month proposals for secretary-level dialogue which was to be hosted by Pakistan.

“... For peaceful dialogue to proceed we need an environment free of violence and terror. And certainly what has happened last week doesn’t fit into that. That said there was no timeline for the talks. We are considering these things and have factored in all subsequent developments also. We will take a call in due time,” he said.

In its proposal, Pakistan had suggested August 27 and 28 for the Wullar Barrage meeting between the water and power secretaries and September 16 and 17 for the Sir Creek maritime boundary issue.

Asserting that India was committed to resolving all outstanding issues with Pakistan through a peaceful bilateral dialogue in an environment free of violence and terror, the spokesperson said: “In the current context and the events of last week we see that upholding of the sanctity of the LoC is vital.

“It is to us one of the most important CBMs between the two countries. It is vital to uphold the sanctity of the LoC.”

He added that “unprovoked incidents on the LoC naturally will have consequences for the bilateral relations”.

—Monitoring Desk

Opinion

Danger lurks
27 Sep 2021

Danger lurks

The colonial mindset continues to percolate.
Dance of death
Updated 27 Sep 2021

Dance of death

India is happily flirting with extermination.
Climate of change
Updated 26 Sep 2021

Climate of change

The world faces a climate emergency as the toll on people’s lives and livelihoods keeps growing.

Editorial

Phasing out coal
Updated 27 Sep 2021

Phasing out coal

Move affords Pakistan an opportunity to renegotiate its deals with Beijing to convert them into cheaper, clean energy projects.
27 Sep 2021

Poor online score

A RECENT report by Freedom House, the US-based watchdog that assesses democratic trends around the world, has placed...
27 Sep 2021

Child’s mental capacity

CONVERTING to another faith is one of the most consequential decisions an individual can make in their lifetime. It...
Updated 26 Sep 2021

Intransigent Taliban

PRIME MINISTER Imran Khan has delivered an effective speech at the UN General Assembly session detailing the salient...
26 Sep 2021

Deadly misinformation

THE distinction between ‘fake’ and ‘authentic’ news is now a concept impossible to escape. In an...
26 Sep 2021

Covid arrests

THE unilateral decision taken by Karachi’s East Zone police to arrest citizens without Covid vaccination cards ...