Pakistan says India has nuke city at Challakere

New Delhi says allegation a 'figment of imagination'

Pakistan says India has nuke city at Challakere

Pakistan on Thursday alleged that India had built “a secret nuclear city” at Challakere in Karnataka to produce atomic weapons. New Delhi was quick to dismiss the allegation as “baseless” and a “figment of imagination”.

Several news portals of Pakistan on Thursday quoted Nafees Zakaria, the spokesperson of Pakistan foreign affairs ministry, as stating that India had built “a secret nuclear city”.

The Daily Times (of Pakistan) reported that Zakaria had expressed concerns on reports that India is building a top secret nuclear city in Challakere in Karnataka to produce thermonuclear weapons.

“These are completely baseless allegations. The secret city appears to be a figment of the Pakistani imagination,” said Vikas Swarup, spokesperson of the Ministry of External Affairs.

“India has always been in compliance with all its international obligations. This is a very strange statement coming from a country that does not have a separation plan and has a strong record of proliferation which is well known to the world”, Swarup added.

Abdul Qadeer Khan, the founder of the nuclear program of Pakistan, was in 2003 found to have traded know-how and technology with Iran, Libya and North Korea.

Khan in 2011 made public documents in support of his claim that North Korea had bribed senior officials of the Pakistani army and got them to allow him to share nuclear technology and certain equipment with Pyongyang.

Islamabad’s accusation comes at a time when India is hosting a meeting of the Implementation and Assessment Group of the Global Initiative to Combat Nuclear Terrorism (GICNT).

The GICNT, which came into existence in 2006, emerged over the past 10 years as a voluntary international partnership of 86 nations and five international organisations, which are committed to strengthening global capacity to prevent, detect and respond to nuclear terrorism.

It is co-chaired by Russia and the United States. The Netherlands chairs the GICNT’s Implementation and Assessment Group or IAG.

The IAG is entrusted with the responsibility of implementing priorities identified by the GICNT plenary and ensuring that the activities of the bloc are coordinated and complementary to other international efforts. Nearly 150 delegates from various GICNT partner countries and international organisations are participating in the IAG meeting.

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