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Published On: Mon, Feb 25th, 2019

PM Narendra Modi should “give peace a chance”” Pak PM Imran Khan

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Imran-Khan-and-Narendra-Modi-1ISLAMABAD : Pakistan premier Imran Khan on Sunday asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi to “give peace a chance” and assured him that, true to his word, he will act immediately if New Delhi provides Islamabad with “actionable intelligence” on the Pulwama terror attack. The appeal came just a day after PM Modi threw a challenge to Mr Khan, asking him to act honourably by bringing to justice those behind the strike, if he was indeed a “Pathan’s son”.
Recalling his conversation with Mr Khan during a congratulatory call after he won the Pakistan elections, PM Modi said he told him “let us fight against poverty and illiteracy” and Mr Khan gave his word – saying he is a “Pathan’s son” who spoke and acted in truth. Pathans, an ethnic group with roots in Iran, are known for their deep sense of honour and self-respect.
PM Modi at the rally in Rajasthan also said, “There is consensus in the entire world against terrorism. We are moving ahead with strength to punish the perpetrators of terrorism… The scores will be settled this time, settled for good…This is a changed India, this pain will not be tolerated…We know how to crush terrorism.”According to news agency PTI, a statement released by the Pakistan Prime Minister’s Office on Sunday said, “PM Imran Khan stands by his words that if India gives us actionable intelligence, we will immediately act.”
PM Modi should “give peace a chance”, Mr Khan said in the statement.
Last week too, Mr Khan assured India that he would act against those responsible for the Pulwama attack, carried out by Pakistan-based terror group Jaish-e-Mohammed, if it shares “actionable intelligence” with Islamabad, but warned New Delhi against launching any retaliatory action.India said Mr Khan’s offer to investigate the attack if provided proof is a “lame excuse”. “It is a well-known fact that Jaish-e-Mohammed and its leader Masood Azhar are based in Pakistan. These should be sufficient proof for Pakistan to take action,” the Ministry of External Affairs said.The Indian government has been working diplomatic channels to “isolate Pakistan” at international forums for “providing support to terrorism.”

“In the horrific attack in Mumbai on 26/11, proof was provided to Pakistan. Despite this, the case has not progressed for the last more than 10 years. Likewise, on the terror attack on Pathankot airbase, there has been no progress. Promises of ”guaranteed action” ring hollow given the track record of Pakistan,” it said.
Meanwhile, A Hindu parliamentarian from Pakistan Saturday made a fervent appeal to the governments of India and Pakistan to defuse tension in the wake of the Pulwama attack, saying New Delhi will benefit the most if the two neighbours joined hands. Ramesh Kumar Vankwani, a member of the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), offered to play the role of a mediator between the two governments and expressed hope that the two countries “don’t indulge in any blame game and together move ahead on the path of peace and prosperity”.
The patron of the Pakistan Hindu Council was in India as part of a 220-member delegation from 185 countries who attended the Kumbh Mela on an invite of the government.The two countries should not allow the use of their soils against each other, Vankwani said, adding that India would benefit the most if the two countries joined hands. On the rising tension post the attack, the lawmaker from Pakistan premier Imran Khan’s party said his government “does not want such a situation”.
“If you have any apprehension, tell me about it. I will share it with my government. I will also speak to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj in this regard,” he said.Vankwani said he shares a spiritual connection with India and visits the country twice every year, even if it’s not a government-sponsored trip.
(With inputs from PTI)


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