Islamabad/New Delhi: Pakistan on Monday rebuffed allegations of a secret meeting between Congress leaders and it’s High Commissioner in New Delhi, saying India should stop “dragging” Islamabad into its electoral debate and termed Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s remark as “baseless and irresponsible”. Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad condemned the “unwarranted” statement by Pakistan on Gujarat elections, and seemed to suggest that it was aimed at bailing out the Congress party. He said Indians were capable of contesting elections on their own. “The role of Pakistan in promoting terrorism in India is too well known. Please stop giving us lessons. We are proud of India’s democracy,” he said. Prasad said it was “curious” that Congress leader
Anand Sharma had initially denied any meeting taking place at the residence of Aiyar. “And in today’s newspapers…It is very evident as to who attended the meeting, including from Pakistan; even Manmohan Singh was in the get-together,” he said. ‘‘Now it is whose turn to apologise? But what is curious is that this happens and Pakistan comes out with an official statement… in many ways seeking to bail out the Congress party. Is it too suspicious? Surely, the country will draw its own conclusion,” he added.’’
Virtually ruling out an apology by odi, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley charged Manmohan Singh with defying the national line by meeting Pakistani diplomats and demanded to know the context, relevance and necessity of such a meet. Terming the meeting as “political misadventure”, Jaitley wanted Singh and the Congress to explain the context of attending the dinner hosted by suspended party leader Mani Shankar Aiyar for Pakistani diplomats. He said the main Opposition party is expected to follow the national policy, which states that terror and talks cannot go hand-in-hand. “Is (the) main opposition party not part of the State?” he asked. Jaitley said that if anyone defies the national line, he should be prepared to answer questions. “It is a political misadventure, it has a political cost,” he said.
Hardik showcases might
Hardik Patel demonstrated his might in Ahmedabad with a hugely attended road show that passed through Amit Shah’s Naranpura and Anandiben Patel’s old constituency as well. Hardik is a force multiplier for the Congress with his single point appeal to throw out the BJP lock, stock and barrel. Interestingly, Modi who has been taking the Congress leaders apart for belittling his humble origins has not said a word against Hardik who is scathing in his criticism of Modi and Amit Shah. In fact, a Patidar leader, who had called Modi a petty pickpocket and recently switched sides to the BJP, has been made a spokesperson of the Gujarat BJP.