ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has rejected Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s comments that insinuated Islamabad was involved in the Pulwama attack, advising India to refrain from dragging Pakistan into its domestic politics.
“Pakistan categorically rejects the Indian Prime Minister’s insinuation of Pakistan’s involvement in the Pulwama attack by alluding to remarks made by a Minister in the National Assembly,” read a statement by the Foreign Office on Saturday.
Modi had repeated unfounded allegations that Pakistan was involved in the Pulwama attack — that claimed the lives of 40 soldiers a couple of years ago — citing federal minister Fawad Chaudhry’s speech in parliament a few days ago.
Modi had used the Pakistani federal minister’s statement to hit out at Indian Opposition parties: “The real face of such people has been exposed after the truth was accepted in the parliament of our neighbouring country,” he had said.
“Today when I was watching the parade of officers here, an image came up in my mind… this image was of Pulwama attack. The country can never forget that when India was mourning the death of its sons… there were some people who were not a part of that grief. They were looking for selfish gain in the Pulwama attack,” Modi had said.
Pakistan said it was a “brazen attempt” by the Indian government to twist Chaudhry’s remarks, clarifying that the minister was talking about the shooting down of two IAF jets on February 27, 2019.
The Foreign Office blamed the BJP’s “incurable obsession” with Pakistan, stating that it was the main reason why the right-wing party kept blaming Islamabad for its own failings and shortcomings.
“It has been a part and parcel of the BJP’s electoral strategy to raise the Pakistan ‘bogey’ in the attempt to galvanise voters’ support, while seeking to divert public attention from their domestic and foreign policy failures,” reads the statement by the Foreign Office.
Pakistan said it believes the biggest beneficiary of the Pulwama attack was the BJP itself, as it helped the party secure a landslide victory in the Lok Sabha elections following the episode.
“On the other hand, to this day, India has failed to provide any credible evidence of Pakistan’s alleged involvement in the Pulwama attack,” said the FO.
In conclusion, Pakistan advised the BJP to stop stoking anti-Pakistan sentiments and instead, come up to the expectations of the Indian masses to perform better in elections.
“The BJP regime is advised, once again, to stop dragging Pakistan into India’s domestic politics, especially at the time of elections in India. Instead of mobilizing the electorate through stoking of anti-Pakistan sentiments,” said Pakistan.
Fawad Chaudhry says Indian government misrepresented his NA statement
“Humne Hindustan ko ghuss kay mara hai (We struck India in their home),” Chaudhry had said in parliament a few days ago, speaking about former speaker Ayaz Sadiq’s comments on Abhinandan’s release.
“Our success in Pulwama is the success of this nation under [Prime Minister] Imran Khan’s leadership.”
The Indian media had run wild with the statement, alleging that Chaudhry had referred to Pakistan’s involvement in the Pulwama attack.
However, the minister clarified he was referring to Pakistan’s shooting down of two Indian aircraft that intruded into its airspace on February 27, 2019.
“The Indian media has once again acted with gross irresponsibility by misrepresenting the context of the speech delivered by Chaudry Fawad Hussain,” a spokesperson for the ministry had said in a statement.
“As a matter of fact, Hussain referred to ‘Operation Swift Retort’ which was a successful military response by the PAF to the transgression by the Indian Air Force into Pakistan’s territory, as a result of which two Indian jets were shot down, not to mention the arrest of the widely discussed pilot Abhinandan, who was later released by the Government of Pakistan as a diplomatic gesture of peace.”