Terming his invitation to Pakistan's military ruler General Pervez Musharraf as a "well thought-out" new initiative towards peace, Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee Tuesday asserted that this should not be
construed as a "weakness", but a demonstration of India's
"The invitation for the talks should not be considered
as a weakness, but it is a demonstration of India's
self-confidence," Vajpayee, who is on a week-long sojourn
in Manali, told reporters, taking time off from his annual vacation
in the hills.
On Pakistan's demand that the Hurriyat Conference be allowed to meet Musharraf during his visit to India, the prime minister said representatives of the conglomerate should first talk to the Centre's interlocutor K C Pant.
"The Hurriyat leaders were released from jail to enable them
to talk to the Indian government. Pant is in Jammu and Kashmir
for talks with various groups and they should come forward for
parleys with him," he said, adding that "the turn of others will come later".
Vajpayee said that he had taken major opposition parties into confidence on the move to invite Musharraf.
Stating that his invitation to Musharraf was a "new
initiative", he said it was a "well thought out" one and hoped
Islamabad would respond positively.
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