Singh calls Gilani a man of peace

At a joint press meet with Gil­ani on the margins of the SAARC Summit, Singh said, “I have always regarded Prime Mi­nister Gilani as a man of pe­a­ce. Every time I have met him in the last three years, this bel­ief has been further strengthened.”

The prime minister went on to state that “the time has come to write a new chapter in the history of our relationship.”

Contesting his statement, the BJP said Pakistan has done nothing to stop acts of terror emanating from its soil against India. “The Prime Minister of India has erred in describing Gilani as a man of peace. The central issue between India and Pakistan has been cross-border terrorism and there is nothing that Pakistan has done to warrant the impression that they are serious about tackling the issue,” said BJP leader and former external affairs minister Yashwant Sinha, adding the pr­ime minister seemed “oblivio­us” to what his own people we­re saying.

Congress was quick to denounce Sinha’s criticism saying the Opposition party’s memory was narrow and it would be better if it first looked into its own track record vis-a-vis Pakistan when NDA was in the power.

“The BJP's memory is not only weak but also very narrow. Before making any such comments, it should look into its own track record and should check its knowledge of diplomacy,” AICC spokesperson Manish Tewari said.

He added, “I want to ask the BJP, who took the bus to Lahore? Did nothing happen after the Lahore step? Who attacked Parliament and the Assembly of Jammu and Kashmir? Then why did (the NDA Prime Minister) Atal Behari Vajpayee invite Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf to India? Who gave the certificate of secularism to Muhammad Ali Jinnah?”

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