India on Sunday thrashed Pakistan’s accusations saying that India was sponsoring “terrorism” aimed at destabilising it and targeting its economic partnership with China.
Pakistan foreign minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and chief military spokesman Maj Gen Babar Iftikhar had on Saturday released a dossier along with what they said were intelligence intercepts that purportedly showed the involvement of Indian intelligence operatives in acts of terrorism.
India’s foreign ministry spokesperson Anurag Srivastava responded to the allegations levelled during the “press conference by the Pakistani establishment” by saying: “This is yet another futile anti-India propaganda exercise.”
He added, “The so-called claims of ‘proof’ against India enjoy no credibility, are fabricated and represent figments of imagination. This desperate attempt will find few takers as the international community is aware of Pakistan’s tactics and proof of its terror sponsorship has been admitted by none other than its own leadership.”
Srivastava also reminded Pakistan that Al Qaeda ideologue Osama bin Laden was killed in Pakistan and Prime Minister Imran Khan had “glorified him as a ‘martyr’” on the floor of Parliament.
“The face of global terror, Osama Bin Laden, was found in Pakistan; Pakistan’s Prime minister glorified him as a ‘martyr’ from the floor of Parliament; he admitted the presence of 40,000 terrorists in Pakistan; their Science and Technology Minister proudly claimed involvement and success of Pakistan, led by its Prime Minister, in the Pulwama terror attack in which 40 Indian soldiers were martyred,” said Srivastava referring to various reported admissions by Pakistani officials and leaders of Islamabad’s involvement in terrorist activities against India.
“Despite repeated calls for restraint and adherence to the ceasefire understanding of 2003 for maintaining peace and tranquility, Pakistani forces continue to engage in providing supporting cover fire to infiltrators. The incessant infiltration of terrorists and induction of weapons to fuel terror activities continues unabated,” he added.
“These activities are not possible without the support of Pakistani forces deployed along the Line of Control (LoC) in Jammu and Kashmir,” he said.
India’s comments were in response to remarks by Qureshi who told reporters that Indian intelligence agents were operating out of neighbouring Afghanistan to plan attacks within Pakistan.
“India was allowing its land to be used against Pakistan for terrorism,” news reports quoted Qureshi as saying.
Pakistan is sending its evidence to the United Nations demanding India be censured, Qureshi said, warning that “without international intervention it is difficult to guarantee peace in nuclear South Asia,” a region where both India and Pakistan possess nuclear weapons.
“We have irrefutable facts that we will present before the nation and international community through this dossier,” Qureshi was quoted as saying.
Srivastava said that the news conference on Saturday was a “deliberate attempt on the part of the Pakistani establishment to shift focus from its internal political and economic failures”.
It also sought to “justify cross-border terrorism, including ceasefire violations and infiltration across the LoC and international boundary”, he said.
“We call upon Pakistan to end its support to cross-border terrorism. Pakistani leaders have never hidden the fact that it has become a factory for producing terrorists,” Srivastava said.
“India is not the only neighbour to be targeted as underlined by the statements of countries similarly targeted. Distant parts of the world have seen the terror trail lead back to Pakistan. Concocting documents and peddling false narratives will not absolve Pakistan of such actions. We are confident the world will hold it to account,” he added.