The duplicity of the Imran Khan government in Pakistan is once again in the spotlight, with Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Shah Mehommod Qureshi riling India by holding a telephonic discussion with separatist Kashmiri leader Mirwaiz Umar Farooq this week. This was a brazen move by Pakistan to antagonize India further, specially at a time when the relations between the two estranged neigbours have touched a new low.
India has decided to take on Pakistan upfront by labelling Mr Qureshi’s call to the separatist Kashmiri leader as a sign of “duplicity” and “an attempt to subvert India’s sovereignty.”
Reacting sharply, India’s Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale summoned Pakistan’s High Commissioner Sohail Mehmood and made it clear to him that there will be consequences if Pakistan does not stop meddling in India’s internal affairs.
Mr Gokhale “conveyed the Government of India’s condemnation in the strongest terms of this latest brazen attempt by Pakistan to subvert India’s unity and to violate our sovereignty and territorial integrity, by none other than the Pakistan Foreign Minister,” said a statement by India’s external affairs ministry.
Underlining that such actions are tantamount to direct interference in the internal affairs of its neighbor, Mr Gokhale conveyed to the Pakistani envoy that “by this action Pakistan has confirmed yet again that it officially abets and encourages individuals associated with terrorism and anti-India activities.”
“It has exposed to the entire international community Pakistan’s duplicity in professing their desire for normal relations with India on the one hand, while openly inciting anti-India activities on the other.”
Placing the foreign secretary’s remarks in perspective, Ravessh Kumar, spokesperson of India’s external affairs ministry, told journalists in New Delhi on December 31 that Pakistan’s foreign minister’s talks with the separatist Kashmiri leader exposed “two faces of the Pakistan government which are at play at the same time.”
“One face talks about peace, good relations with India, and the other face takes action which are completely anti-India,” he said.
Predictably, Pakistan’s foreign office has rejected India’s objections. Pakistan foreign office spokesperson Dr Muhammad Faisal said that India must confines its electoral politics to their homeland only.
Commenting on Kashmir, Dr Faisal alleged India keeps changing its policies regarding Kashmir. He reiterated that Pakistan had a clear stand on Kashmir which underlines that the dispute should be resolved as per the United Nations resolutions.
India has consistently opposed any attempt to internationalize the Kashmir issue. In this context, India has conveyed its strong objections to the UK over a conference on Kashmir in London, which is expected to be addressed by Pakistan’s Foreign Minister Qureshi.
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