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'I have brought a message of peace'
A Correspondent In Jaipur |
April 16, 2005 14:48 IST
Last Updated: April 16, 2005 20:05 IST
Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf arrived in New Delhi on Saturday evening.
He will hold talks with Prime Minister Manmohan Singh besides watching the last Indo-Pak one-dayer at Ferozeshah Kotla ground on Sunday.
First Look: Musharraf prays for peace
Accompanied by his wife Sheeba and a high-level delegation, Musharraf was received at the airport by External Affairs Minister K Natwar Singh.
Attired in a black suit, Musharraf smiled and waved to media personnel and seemed to be in a mood to speak to them, but apparently had some afterthoughts.
Foreign Secretary Shyam Saran and Indian High Commissioner to Pakistan Shiv Shankar Menon were also present to receive the President at the Palam technical area.
He landed by a special PIA flight from Jaipur after paying obeisance at the Ajmer Sharif shrine.
"I have brought a message of peace," Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf told reporters at the dargah of famous Sufi saint Khwaja Moinuddin Chisti in Ajmer.
"I and my wife are honoured to pray at the dargah of Khwaja Moinuddin Chisti. We prayed for peace and prosperity for the people of India and Pakistan. We prayed for normalisation of relations between India and Pakistan," Musharraf said.
Complete coverage: Cricket and Kashmir -- Musharraf in India
Dressed in a spotless white pathani suit, just right for the scorching Rajasthan summer, Musharraf and his wife, Sehba, were welcomed in Jaipur by Chief Minister Vasundhararaje Scindia.
The Musharrafs then took a chopper to Ajmer and then a short car ride to the dargah.
The Pakistani International Airlines plane that brought the Musharrafs to Jaipur was adorned with Indian and Pakistani flags. Though the Indian flag was put upside down, the mistake was detected and rectified quickly.
Musharraf will meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in Delhi later in the evening and then attend a dinner hosted in his honour by Dr Singh.
On Sunday, he will watch the last India-Pakistan match at the Ferozeshah Kotla ground in the ongoing cricket series.
He will also meet the Leader of the Opposition Lal Kishenchand Advani and United Progressive Alliance chief Sonia Gandhi.
Earlier, Talking to reporters at the Islamabad airport Musharraf described his India visit as historic. "I think it is very much a historic visit. It has chances for optimism because the environment, when you compare Agra with today, is very different. It is a congenial and friendly environment and the desire from both sides is to make it a success," he said.
Also see: 'Hurriyat isn't the sole representative of Kashmir'