Making a statement on his visit to Islamabad to attend the SAARC Home Ministers’ Summit, Home Minister Rajnath Singh has made a clarification in Rajya Sabha on August 5 that it is true that during his speech DD, ANI and PTI reporters were not allowed.
Regarding blacking out of his speech, he said was not aware of protocol norms followed during previous events, and will have to gather information from the ministry of external affairs.
“I did not register any protest there. I will not comment whether Pakistan was right or wrong in not allowing the coverage,” the home minister said.
About not having lunch with Pakistan Interior Minister, he said, “the minister invited everyone for lunch, but then left in his car. I also left then. I have no grudges as I wasn’t there to have lunch.”
He also said that all our prime ministers have done their best to improve relations with our neighbours but the problem is “yeh padosi hai ki maanta hi nahi hai.”
He also appreciated how all members have spoken in one voice on the issue of terrorism, adding that the unity of the House against terrorism reflects the country’s determination to fight terrorism.
“There were groups protesting as I went from chopper to hotel. But had I been worried about protests, I would not have gone,” he said.
He said that in his speech he urged all SAARC nations to neither glorify terror nor patronise terrorists.
The ongoing strain in Indo-Pak relations was evident at the SAARC interior/home ministers’ conference when home minister Rajnath Singh came face- to-face with his Pakistani counterpart Chaudhary Nisar Ali Khan for the first time and the two leaders barely shook hands.