A day after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh indicated that India won’t call off engagement with Pakistan, Islamabad on Sunday sought clarification from New Delhi regarding errors that have crept into its list of 50 most-wanted terrorists.
According to reports, Pakistan Foreign Office spokesperson Tehmina Janjua said her country will look “seriously” at any such list that is given to it by India. India had asked Pakistan to hand over all those 50 terrorists that it said were living in Pakistan.
On his return from an Africa trip on Saturday, Singh had said that Jehadi groups that target India must be effectively curbed and dealt with. “The world has seen, as never before that the epicentre of terror is in our neighbourhood,” he had said, referring to the killing of Osama bin Laden in Abbottabad, about 65 km from Islamabad. At the same time, he ruled out ending engagement with Pakistan.
On Saturday, Home Secretary GK Pillai had said that an updated list of India’s ‘Most-Wanted’ terrorists allegedly hiding in Pakistan would be given to that country after mistakes were detected in the earlier list. “The review of the entire list which was handed over is being currently undertaken by the CBI (Central Bureau of Investigation), the NIA (National Investigation Agency) and various agencies. As soon as they are completed, if there are any corrections to be made, we will make that and then communicate the same to the Pakistani side,” Pillai was quoted as saying in an agency report.
In fact, two men on New Delhi’s list of 50 most-wanted fugitives were found to be in India, causing much embarrassment to the home ministry and security agencies. The list, which was handed over to Pakistan early this year, included the names of five Pakistani Army officers linked to the 2008 Mumbai attacks.
The Prime Minister has indicated renewed engagement with Pakistan, but there is widespread difference of opinion in the current Congress-led dispensation on the terms of engagement with India’s hostile neighbour.