New Delhi, Aug 6 (IANS) India is set to strongly take up with Pakistan the Gurdaspur and Udhampur terror strikes at the National Security Advisor-level talks later this month even as Islamabad has yet to respond to the dates proposed by New Delhi, but looks likely to accept.
A day after a Pakistani terrorist was nabbed at Udhampur, the second such since Ajmal Kasab was nabbed during the 26/11 attacks, informed sources said that Pakistan had not yet responded to the August 23-24 dates proposed for the meeting between NSAs Ajit Doval and Pakistan’s Sartaj Aziz.
The NSA talks, proposed at the July 10 landmark meeting between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif in Russia’s Ufa, is mandated to discuss issues connected to terrorism.
“India would certainly raise the Gurdaspur and Udhampur terror attacks. After all, the two are not meeting to have a cup of tea. The mandate of the talk is to discuss all issues related to terrorism, and this will feature strongly,” said the sources.
But India is still waiting for Pakistan to confirm the dates.
Pakistani sources told IANS they were “deliberating the issue” of the NSA talks. They said they were keen to keep up to the agreements arrived at Ufa, pointing to the release of 163 Indian fishermen – that was part of the joint media statement read out on July 10.
But with Pakistani terrorists being involved in the Gurdaspur terror attack of July 27, which had the ingredients of 26/11, and the Udhampur attack, which was aimed to strike mayhem among Amarnath yatris, Pakistan appears in an uncomfortable situation vis-a-vis its declaration to fight terrorism.
On Thursday, Home Minister Rajnath Singh condemned the Udhampur terror attack and termed it an attempt by Pakistan to destabilise peace in Jammu and Kashmir.
“Two militants attacked Border Security Force (BSF) convoy in Udhampur in Jammu on Wednesday. Two jawans were killed and 14 were injured in the attack,” the home minister said in a statement in the Rajya Sabha.
“One of the two terrorists was killed and the other was arrested with the help of locals. The other terrorist has been brought to Jammu and interrogation is on. After initial interrogation, the terrorist has told his name is Naved, alias Mohammad Usman, and he is from Faisalabad,” Singh added.
The Pakistan Foreign Office on Thursday said New Delhi should provide proof of any Pakistani found involved in terrorist activity on Indian soil.
The statement came after India said Usman, a militant captured on Wednesday shortly he and a fellow militant shot dead two Border Security Force troopers, was a Pakistani.
“We have repeatedly asked India to refrain from accusations,” Dawn quoted Pakistan Foreign Office spokesman Qazi Khalilullah as saying.
Pakistan’s National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) has also denied that Usman is a Pakistani.
Dunya news cited official sources as saying that the suspect was not a Pakistani as information about him was not found in NADRA’s records.
On July 27, three armed terrorists attacked Dinanagar town and police station in Gurdaspur in Punjab. The terrorists, who killed seven people, were holed up in the police station for over 11 hours before they were killed.
The two terror attacks are seen as typical moves by Pakistan’s military intelligence establishment to scuttle talks with New Delhi.