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India, Pakistan must put past behind, look ahead: Rehman Malik

December 15, 2012

Interior Minister Rehman Malik (C) gestures while speaking as Kunwar Ratanjit Pratap Narain Singh (2R), Indian Minister of State in Home Affairs, looks on after Malik arrived at an Indian Air Force station in New Delhi on Dec 14, 2012. — Photo by AFP

KARACHI: In an interview to an Indian television channel, Interior Minister Rehman Malik said India and Pakistan would have to learn from their troubled past and would have to look forward and towards the future.

In an interview to NDTV, Malik stated he had never compared the demolition of the Babri mosque to the 9/11 attacks or to the Mumbai attacks, adding that, his statements had been misunderstood.

Regarding the case of Saurabh Kalia, an officer in the Indian Army who had died during the Kargil War while being held as a prisoner of war by Pakistani security forces, the minister said he was "willing" to have the case investigated.

"I only said circumstances of his death are disputed, I am asking for more information...I feel the pain of Captain Kalia's father; I will definitely look into the matter," Malik said to NDTV.

On the issue of Jamaatud Dawa chief Hafiz Saeed, he said Pakistan needed evidence against him which could stand in court.

He added that although Saeed had earlier been arrest, he had been released by the courts and that the government respected the orders of the judiciary.

On the accord sealed by India and Pakistan easing tough visa restrictions for travellers, the minister said the agreement would lead to mutual cooperation between the two countries.

Malik added that the two countries can ensure lasting peace by putting the issues of the past behind.