Ahead of the Indo-Pak talks under the Indus Waters Treaty (IWT) in Lahore, India on Thursday stuck to its stand that Pakistan needs to walk away from terrorism for any government-level dialogue to take place. External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Gopal Baglay rejected the suggestion that India’s participation at the Permanent Indus Commission meet on March 20-21 amounted to resumption of the dialogue.
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Reacting to a query on remarks of Mahmud Ali Durrani that the 26/11 Mumbai strike carried out by a Pak-based group and that its chief Hafiz Saeed is punished, Baglay said India has been maintaining that the conspiracy was totally carried out from Pakistan, which should take action against the perpetrators.
Referring to terror organisation such as JeM and others, he said these terrorist organisations and their affiliates under the garb of charities continue to operate in Pakistan despite being proscribed by the UN.
“We would expect Pakistan to take action against these entities as mandated by the international regimes and stop cross-border terrorism and activities that these organisations are carrying out against India. Our leadership has very clearly said Pakistan has to walk away from terrorism,” Baglay asserted.
Asked what has changed from last year when India suspended talks with Pakistan under IWT of the ground that “blood and water cannot flow together”, he said it had two inherent messages, including one meant for Pakistan that it cannot continue terrorism against India and which remains the same.
He also insisted that the commission deals with technical matters concerning implementation of the IWT, which mandates it to meet at least once every year, alternately in India and Pakistan.
He also rejected propositions that recent release of prisoners by both India and Pakistan and today’s talks between their army’s Director General Military Operations (DGMO) were indicative of thaw in bilateral ties, saying both sides are in touch on humanitarian issues through established mechanisms.