NEW DELHI, Jan 2: Indian Defence Minister George Fernandes said on Wednesday that Indian forces had completed their biggest-ever buildup along the border with Pakistan, but were “not in battle positions”.

“Efforts are being made to defuse the situation through diplomatic intervention,” he said.

In a signal of a possible easing of tensions, Foreign Minister Abdul Sattar and his Indian counterpart, Jaswant Singh, “shook hands with smiling faces” on the eve of the SAARC summit in Kathmandu.

But the cooling of India’s hawkish rhetoric came as the Lashkar-i-Taiba and Jaish-i-Mohammad, accused of the parliament attack, threatened more violence.—Reuters

Opinion

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