New Delhi: Pakistani Interior Minister Rehman Malik Friday struck a discordant note by equating terror attacks, including 9/11 and the 2008 Mumbai attack, with the Babri Masjid demolition.
Speaking to reporters after his meeting with Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde, the Pakistani interior minister, who arrived here Friday afternoon, said his country was suffering at the hands of terrorism.
“Terrorism is horrible… ask the people of Pakistan who are suffering at the hands of non-state actors… (we should) forget the past and move forward,” he said.,
“Terrorism brings grief, we do not want a 9/11, Bombay blast, Samjhauta Express blast, Babri Mosque demolition. We want peace not only in India and Pakistan but in the region,” said Malik.
On handing over Mumbai terror attack mastermind and LeT founder Hafiz Saeed to India, Malik said he would give “three judgments from (Pakistani) court” to Shinde and added that “the judgments can’t be denied”.
“There is demand from people of India on Saeed,” he said, adding he would give the documents to Shinde.
Referring to Ajmal Kasab, the lone Pakistani gunman who was hanged Nov 21, he said, “We have respected” the Indian court judgment on Kasab’s hanging.
On bringing the perpetrators of 26/11 to book, Malik said: “Trial is on fast track, we are on it… we assure Indian authorities, specially my brother (referring to Shinde), that we will not leave any stone unturned… the day is not far when you’ll see conviction and justice being done.”
Referring to communication sent by India for action against 26/11 accused, Malik said that seven people have been arrested.
“This is our determination… we will take the culprits, terrorists (behind 26/11) to justice and this is my commitment,” he added.
“There is consensus (in Pakistan) and we have agreed to fast-track the judicial process related to 26/11 accused,” said Malik.
On the Mumbai terror attack, Malik said “terrorism is horrible”, and added “whatever happened in Bombay I have my sympathies. it was horrible.”
“Ask Pakistanis who are suffering daily due to non-state actors.”
Then, in the same breath he mentioned the terror attacks and the Dec 6, 1992, Babri Masjid demolition by right-wing Hindu groups that polarised the country on religious lines.
Malik also referred to the 2007 Samjhauta Express blast that led to the deaths of 58 people, mostly Pakistanis. Members of some Hindu right-wing groups are being suspected to be behind the blast.
India and Pakistan Friday operationalised their liberalised visa regime for more people-to-people contact.