Congress leader Shashi Tharoor July 28 said that they have no objection to Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh attending the SAARC Home/Interior Ministers meeting in Pakistan, but added that the grand old party would react only if the ruling dispensation initiates a bilateral meeting with Islamabad.
“We cannot object to them going to a general SAARC meeting because SAARC is an institution that is in all our interest. When the question of bilateral meetings comes up then the Congress Party I am sure will have something else to say,” Tharoor told the media in New Delhi.
“But it is important that if there are bilateral meetings, the government does what it has failed to do in the past and that is to take the nation into confidence as to what its vision is,” Tharoor added.
Rajnath would attend the SAARC Home/Interior Ministers meeting in Islamabad on August 3 and 4.
Sources, meanwhile, said the Home Minister will raise the issue of cross-border terrorism at the meeting.
At the 13th SAARC Summit held in Dhaka in November 2005, the Heads of State decided that the SAARC Interior/Home Ministers would meet annually preceded by a meeting of the Interior/Home Secretaries to strengthen cooperation in the area of counter-terrorism, which they agreed was a challenge to all states and a threat to humanity, and could not be justified on any grounds.
The first meeting of SAARC Interior/Home Ministers was held in Dhaka on May 11, 2006, followed by a meeting in New Delhi in 2007.