A day after Pakistan’s Army chief pledged his support for better ties with India, New Delhi on Thursday asserted that Islamabad will have to take action against terror groups operating from its soil before the bilateral relationship between the two countries improves.
According to media reports Pakistan Army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa had said that he will support any initiative of the civilian government to resolve issues with India through talks.
Reacting to the comments, External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said India would like good relations with Pakistan provided Islamabad takes action against terror groups.
“It is important for Pakistan to understand our core concern, which is terrorism. We have time and again asked them to take action against terrorists who are operating from their soil. This is something they (Pakistan) will have to handle if they are serious in cultivating this friendship,” Kumar said when asked about Pakistan Army chief’s comments.
“Like any good neighbour, we do desire good neighbourly relations with the country which is next to us,” Kumar said.
In a rare move, the Pakistan Army chief briefed the Senate – the upper house of the parliament – on security situation and regional issues on Tuesday. During the briefing, Gen Bajwa also said his forces were in favour of good ties with all neighbours including India.
“We can resolve issues with India through talks instead of war. In this situation if the government decides to hold talks with India, then the army would back the government,” he was quoted as saying.
The military leadership had come to Pakistan’s Parliament to brief lawmakers on the security situation for the first time in six years.
(With inputs from PTI)