Pakistan high commissioner should be declared persona non grata: Yashwant Sinha

NEW DELHI (TIP): Senior BJP leader and former foreign minister Yashwant Sinha on Thursday called for declaring Pakistan high commissioner as persona non grata for
“crossing all lines” of diplomatic etiquette by indulging in provocative activities such as inviting Kashmiri separatist leaders ahead of India-Pak talks.

The former Union minister also demanded that the upcoming NSA-level talks should be immediately called off, accusing Pakistan of “vitiating” the atmosphere.

“This is not the appropriate occasion for talks. From the time of Vajpayee government it has been our policy that terror and talks cannot go together. This is the consistent policy of BJP as well … The talks should be called off,” he said while citing spurt in terror attacks, ceasefire violations as compelling reasons to do so.

Pakistan has used opportunities given by such meetings with India for grandstanding, he said and added that the neighbouring country will come with an counter-argument for every argument put forth by India and a counter-dossier for every Indian dossier on terror, he said.

“If anything, incidents of terror have increased of late, especially after Ufa declaration. A new dimension to the situation has been added by the complete violation of ceasefire along line of control and International Border.

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“Fresh provocation has been provided by Pakistan with its high commissioner inviting Hurriyat leader to meet its NSA,” he said.

He recalled that Centre had decided to call off foreign secretary-level talks last year after a similar invite to Hurriyat leaders was sent before they were to be held.

“There is complete defiance and complete lack of concern shown by Pakistan, especially their high commissioner, of Indian sentiments and sensitivities. The atmosphere has been completely vitiated by Pakistan. If these talks are held they will obviously have opposite effect of peace,” he said.

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