ISLAMABAD: Minister for Information and Broadcasting, Chaudhry Fawad Hussain says Pakistan is ready to hold talks with the new Indian leadership, whatever it may, for normalization of bilateral relations and to move things forward.
In an interview with Hindustan Times, the Minister said Pakistani leadership believes that there will be no forward movement until election process in India is completed.
He said diplomatic channels that were used to reduce tensions in the aftermath of the Pulwama terror attack are remained operational, albeit in the backdrop.
Fawad Chaudhry said Islamabad is looking towards engaging with the new dispensation in New Delhi after the completion of the Indian elections.
He said it is obvious that the atmosphere that was developed post-Pulwama and the tensions are not in the interests of the people or the region. The Minister said the way in which a war frenzy has been created in India, especially in the media, that leads to fears but things are moving on.
However, he contended that the post-Pulwama tensions had not been adequately addressed on the Indian side.
The Information Minister said from the Pakistani side, there was never any war frenzy and we tried to reduce the retaliation and behaved very responsibly. He described Islamabad’s plan to release 360 Indian prisoners, who had completed their sentences, as a reflection of the desire to normalize ties with India.
He said it shows the Pakistani intention of normalization with India and we will continue this policy.
Fawad Chaudhry expressed disappointment at the recent death of Pakistani prisoner Shakirullah during a brawl in Jaipur Central Jail in February.
He said we have shown magnanimity and the day we released Wing Commander Abhinandan, the next day a Pakistani prisoner’s body was handed over to us. But despite that, the atmosphere in Pakistan has remained calm.
Fawad Chaudhry said Islamabad will also continue its efforts to operationalize the Kartarpur Corridor connecting Dera Baba Nanak in India with Gurdwara Darbar Sahib in Pakistan by the time of the 550th birth anniversary of Guru Nanak in November.
He said the government in Indian Punjab has shown non-seriousness on the Kartarpur Corridor.
The Information said it’s a historic moment and Pakistan will take this forward in every way.