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December 17, 2001
1435 IST

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India rejects Pakistan's demand for joint probe

Onkar Singh and Tara Shankar Sahay in New Delhi

The Government of India has rejected Pakistan's offer to conduct a joint inquiry into the December 13 attack on Parliament House.

President Pervez Musharraf's spokesman, Major General Rashid Qureshi, had said that if such an inquiry found any outfit based in Pakistan to have been involved in the attack, the government would take stringent action against it.

But Union Minister of State for Home I D Swami told rediff.com, "How can any country accept such an offer? This is not only ridiculous, but highly absurd."

He criticised Pakistan for even thinking of making such offer. "We do not need assistance from Pakistan in investigations," he said. "The Delhi police and security agencies have not only foiled the attack, they have also exposed the entire conspiracy behind it in the shortest possible time."

"We have established clear links between the perpetrators of the attack and the ISI, which is behind such attacks. Pakistan now needs to take stringent measures to ensure that terrorists do not operate from its soil," he added.

He criticised those who were blaming the government for security lapses that led to the attack. "Instead of appreciating that the security personnel posted in the Parliament complex took prompt action and defeated the designs of the terrorists, these elements are criticising the government," he remarked. "The security lapse would have been if they had managed to get away and been allowed to see another day. Here they were not allowed to see even the next hour."

Complete Coverage: The Attack on Parliament

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