ISLAMABAD, May 15: The government has sufficiently enhanced its military strength on borders to repulse any attack by the enemy, Information Minister Nisar Memon said on Wednesday.
Briefing reporters after the cabinet meeting, he said Pakistan was quite capable of thwarting any venture by the enemy.
Commenting on the statement of Indian Defence Minister George Fernandes that India could retaliate against Pakistan, Mr Memon said that all measures had been taken to protect every inch of the homeland and that nobody should take Pakistan for granted.
He, however, said there was no unusual movement of troops on the borders by the Indians. “Pakistan wants peace with India and we hope that India will not venture and if it does then it must be ready for receiving an adequate reply. But I believe that our foreign friends are taking a lot of interest to defuse the situation in the region,” the minister said, adding that the cabinet had decided to take into confidence the nation if and when required over the situation going on between India and Pakistan.
He told a reporter that Pakistan had beefed up its military presence on its western border to check any illegal entry by Afghans. He said the government would not allow any country to use Pakistan soil for conducting any operation inside Afghanistan.
In reply to a question, Mr Memon said it was not the first time that India had accused Pakistan of encouraging terrorism in occupied Kashmir. “We totally reject India’s allegation that we are involved in the Jammu incident,” he said, adding that Pakistan itself had been the victim of international terrorism, and in this behalf, he recalled the May 8 suicide bombing in Karachi.
In reply to another question, the minister said that an Indian journalist had been arrested when he was attempting to cross into Afghanistan from Pakistan without valid documents. Nevertheless, he added, he would be released shortly after investigation.
Mr Memon said that there was no discussion or decision about certain constitutional amendments at the cabinet meeting. The matter, he pointed out, was still with the National Reconstruction Bureau. “The cabinet will deal with the issue of amendments shortly, and later it will be made public.”
The minister denied that any interim government was under consideration. “There is no decision about the interim government in the cabinet,” he said, adding that the new government would come into being after the October elections.
Asked to comment on reports that foreigners, especially businessmen, were facing problems to get visa, he said there had been some problems due to the blast in Karachi but generally nobody had been refused visa for Pakistan.
Mr Memon said that Riaz Basra had been killed in a police encounter and his body had been identified by Punjab’s inspector-general of police. It was wrong to say that Riaz Basra was killed in a fake encounter, he added. He rejected the idea that there should be a judicial inquiry into the killing of Riaz Basra.
APP ADDS: Mr Memon said that India had resorted to all kinds of methods to malign Pakistan but it had miserably failed.
Talking to CNN, he said: “We insist that India should refrain from accusing Pakistan because India has made it a habit in the past, and continues with it.”
The minister said that India should now find out why it was happening all the time, and added that, in fact, it was also illogical as anybody who would be doing it could not be friend of Pakistan.
“Therefore, it is illogical for India to blame Pakistan all the time whatever happens in their country,” he added.
Pakistan, he said, has condemned the Jammu attack.
“Any attack of this kind, no matter where it happens, we condemn it, and particularly, we have the sympathises with the families who have lost their lives, because to us, this is not acceptable and this is what we have already said.”