Indian PM accepts invitation to visit Pakistan

Published December 13, 2013
Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif meeting Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Thursday. — Photo by INP
Punjab Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif meeting Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Thursday. — Photo by INP

NEW DELHI, Dec 12: Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Thursday got a formal invite from his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif for visiting that country, which was accepted, The Economic Times said.

The invite was handed over to Dr Singh by Mr Sharif’s Special Assistant Tariq Fatemi and Chief Minister of Punjab Shahbaz Sharif who met the Indian prime minister for about half an hour.

Shahbaz Sharif was quoted as telling a group of reporters that the prime minister’s goodwill message was handed over to Dr Singh along with the invitation.

Asked about the response, he said Dr Singh had accepted the invitation. “Let us see”.

Pakistani leaders have been extending invitation to Singh for the last few years but the Indian leader has said his visit would depend on the situation on the ground in terms of terrorism and the LoC.

Pakistan High Commission said the message of goodwill from Nawaz Sharif emphasised “Pakistan’s desire to forge friendly and cooperative relations with India in the interest of peace and prosperity of the people of the two countries and of the region.”

The chief minister’s unusual meeting as protocol goes assumes significance given the disappointment expressed by India over the progress on agreed outcome of the meeting between Nawaz Sharif and his Pakistani counterpart in New York in September.

Besides Mr Fatemi, the Punjab chief minister was accompanied by Minister of State for Commerce Khurram Dastagir Khan and Provincial Minister for Education Rana Mashood Khan and High Commissioner Salman Bashir.

The chief minister also underscored the importance of resumption of dialogue and peaceful resolution of all issues.

Opinion

Editorial

Border clashes
19 May, 2024

Border clashes

THE Pakistan-Afghanistan frontier has witnessed another series of flare-ups, this time in the Kurram tribal district...
Penalising the dutiful
19 May, 2024

Penalising the dutiful

DOES the government feel no remorse in burdening honest citizens with the cost of its own ineptitude? With the ...
Students in Kyrgyzstan
Updated 19 May, 2024

Students in Kyrgyzstan

The govt ought to take a direct approach comprising convincing communication with the students and Kyrgyz authorities.
Ominous demands
Updated 18 May, 2024

Ominous demands

The federal government needs to boost its revenues to reduce future borrowing and pay back its existing debt.
Property leaks
18 May, 2024

Property leaks

THE leaked Dubai property data reported on by media organisations around the world earlier this week seems to have...
Heat warnings
18 May, 2024

Heat warnings

STARTING next week, the country must brace for brutal heatwaves. The NDMA warns of severe conditions with...