Accusing the Government of making a U-turn on holding talks with Pakistan following US "nudge", senior BJP leader L K Advani has said that no concrete outcome is possible in any dialogue till that country abandons terrorism.
Terming the UPA's stand on Indo-Pak talks as a "self-inflicted insult", he said the only outcome that seemed to have emerged from the recent Foreign Secretary-level talks was that they will stay in touch. "Our Foreign Secretary called the recently concluded meeting 'constructive' but her Pakistani counterpart ridiculed the meeting and said his country did not believe in 'cosmetic engagement' and did not want India to 'lecture' them by demanding that Pakistan should 'do this or that'," Advani said in his latest blog posting titled 'UPA's shabby approach to Indo-Pak talks : A self-inflicted insult'. Taking a dig at the Government on the outcome of the talks, Advani said in his statement to Parliament External Affairs Minister S M Krishna described the meeting as constructive and useful. "But the only concrete outcome that seemed to emerge from the 500-word statement was the Foreign Secretaries agreement to stay in touch," the BJP leader said. He said India's "U-turn" on the issue of dialogue with Pakistan seems to be the upshot of "Washington's nudge." The "firmness" shown by the NDA government in dealing with Pakistan bore fruits in the form of a joint statement in which Islamabad assured that it would not permit Pakistan or any territory in Pakistan's control to be used to support terrorism in any manner, he said.
The Chairman of BJP's Parliamentary Party wondered whether the dialogue is linked with Pakistan abandoning terrorism, "or have the two been de-linked as was clearly said by our PM at Sharm-el-Sheikh?" Advani said while in the Sharm-el-Sheikh joint statement, issued after Singh's talks with his Pakistani counterpart Yousaf Raza Gilani, "at least there was clarity; in this latest one, there is nothing but contradictions and obfuscation." Advani said when terror stalks India, having no dialogue is a legitimate diplomatic option. The BJP had taken this line in its resolution on Jammu and Kashmir in the National Council meeting at Indore. Referring to the Agra summit, Advani said when General Pervez Musharraf returned from the Agra summit in July 2001 he was "very angry" with the Indian Government for having invited him and sent him back empty-handed, without even a joint statement containing some "goody goody observations about Indo-Pak amity." He said it was then Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee's uncompromising stand at Agra regarding cross border terrorism that fetched him "historical triumph". "In January 2004 after the SAARC conference General Musharraf made a joint statement with Shri Vajpayee at Islamabad taking a position on terrorism absolutely different from the one he took at Agra, and assuring Vajpayee that he would not permit Pakistan or any territory in Pakistan's control to be used to support terrorism in any manner," he wrote in the blog. PTI