Fresh dossier relinks terror

Fresh dossier relinks terror

Home Minister hands over response to Islamabads latest queries

Fresh dossier relinks terror

FIRM VOICE: Home Minister P Chidambaram with Secretary G K Pillai at a press meet in New Delhi on Saturday. PTI

Under intense Opposition fire in Parliament over the last few days for allegedly de-linking terror from dialogue with Pakistan through the controversial joint statement Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had signed with his Pakistani counterpart in Sharm-el-Sheikh, Egypt, the government on Saturday fielded Union Home Minister P Chidambaram to strongly re-link terror to New Delhi’s Pakistan diplomacy.

Allaying apprehensions

Announcing the handing over of a fresh dossier of evidence to Islamabad at a press conference in the capital during the day, the minister also made a statement asking the Pakistani government to close the terror taps from across the borders.

The timing of this action is widely seen as a move to allay apprehensions emanating from the joint statement. Pakistan’s Deputy High Commissioner to India, Rifat Masood, was summoned to the Foreign Office in South Block to hand over the dossiers, the fourth on the involvement of Pakistanis in the Mumbai terror attacks.

On July 11, Pakistan had provided to India a dossier giving an update on investigations in the country into the Mumbai terrorist attacks wherein it had also requested India to provide “further evidence”.

Speaking about the dossier, Chidambaram told newsmen that “a seven-page response with annexure had been handed over to the Ministry of External Affairs for transmission to the government of Pakistan”.

Chidambaram said his ministry had finalised the response to the latest set of questions sent by Pakistan in connection with the investigations in that country on terror and sent it to the External Affairs Ministry on Friday.

Enough evidence

“The evidence provided in three dossiers is, in our view, sufficient to investigate role of Hafiz Saeed,” the minister said, adding that “the investigations in Pakistan will also throw up enough evidence”.

Islamabad has freed Saeed on the ground that there was no evidence to proceed against him. Just four days ago, Pakistan had said that it would not arrest Saeed till adequate proof was provided by India on his involvement in the Mumbai carnage.

Five Lashkar-e-Toiba operatives, including operations commander Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi, arrested by the Pakistani security agencies, are currently facing trial in an anti-terror court for alleged involvement in the Mumbai attacks.

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