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Home > News > PTI

Pak not controlling jihadi leaders: India

June 07, 2006 18:21 IST

Noting that Pakistan is not trying to control jihadi leaders roaming free on its soil, India has said that confidence between the two countries cannot be built in such circumstances.

India's concerns cannot be appeased as long as the jihadi leaders are roaming free in Pakistan and issuing statements and openly making claims for different acts, Foreign Secretary Shyam Saran was quoted as telling a group of Pakistani journalists currently on a goodwill visit to India.

"The Pakistani government is not trying to control them, so how can confidence come in these circumstances?" he asked.

His remarks came as Pakistan said the two countries should go beyond confidence-building measures to address contentious issues, including the Kashmir problem.

Contending that settlement of the Kashmir problem was essential for peace between India and Pakistan, he nevertheless said no quick solution was possible for such an old issue.

He said India has responded to the proposals put forth by Pakistan while Islamabad has not yet responded to the Indian proposals.

He mentioned the proposal to start the Daras-Kargil bus service as one such proposal advanced by India.

About the Pakistani proposal of "joint control" of some areas of Jammu and Kashmir, Saran said it was not acceptable to India.

On another Pakistani proposal of "self governance", he said its implementation required functioning of certain public institutions.

While a four-tier public representation system was in place in Jammu and Kashmir, there were no such institutions in Pakistan's northern areas and Pakistan-occupied Kashmir, he was quoted as saying by The News.

If these institutions were in place, they could have managed issues such as tourism, water and other affairs jointly, Saran said.

He, however, noted that a marked progress has been made on the Kashmir CBMs since the composite dialogue process started between India and Pakistan in 2004.

A number of CBMs taken on Kashmir reflect the progress made on this matter.

He made it clear that India would not accept any third party joining the composite dialogue process.

Saran pointed out that the ceasefire on the Line of Control was holding, the Srinagar-Muzaffarabad bus service operating, the truck service between the two cities is about to start very soon and so is the Poonch-Rawalakot bus service.

Similarly, he said, more meeting points on the LoC have been opened for the benefit of the Kashmiri people.

"All this indicate that progress is being made on the Kashmir CBMs," he added.

He also said that there was no hesitation on the part of India regarding Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's visit to Pakistan.

"We are waiting for the right time. We are working on a substantive agenda so that the visit by the Indian prime minister to Islamabad may prove a positive one," Saran was quoted as saying by the paper.

Saran also expressed disappointment over the progress made so far to boost trade and economic links between the two countries.

Over the last two years, the trade between the two countries has increased from $200 million to $800 million whereas India expected it to touch between $4 billion and $5 billion.

He said the indirect trade continued to flourish through Dubai, which is not beneficial to the two countries.

Saran also said that India has proposed the exchange of visits by the teams of the National Defence College from both the sides along with other staff colleges.

"Similarly, we have proposed exchange of visits by the vice chiefs of the army staff or at least an exchange of sports teams of the armed forces from both sides. Pakistan has not responded to any of these proposals we put forward," he said.

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