Sunday, Dec 14, 2003
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India & World
By B. Muralidhar Reddy
Pakistan's concerns were conveyed in a demarche to the Indian High Commission 18 days after both sides agreed to observe a ceasefire along the LoC and International Border, including the Siachen Glacier.
India has been erecting a fence for some years now. The plan, however, was disrupted due to firing. Islamabad believes that New Delhi has stepped up the pace of fencing since the ceasefire and sees it as an attempt to convert the LoC into IB. But India says the fencing is for preventing the infiltration of militants.
The demarche came a day after the Pakistan President, Pervez Musharraf, and the Pakistan Prime Minister, Zafarullah Khan Jamali, told India not to change the status of the LoC. ``There cannot be any change ... especially when talks for rapprochement are going on,'' Gen. Musharraf said at the ceremony to mark the commissioning of an Agosta 90-B submarine at Karachi today.
In a related development, the Pakistan Minister for Information and Broadcasting, Sheikh Rashid Ahmed, today said that the Pakistan Parliamentary Party leader, Benazir Bhutto's visit to India, at the juncture when both the countries are in the process of normalising bilateral relations, was a bid to damage the cause of upcoming SAARC Summit. ``Benazir never wanted normalisation of relations,'' he said.
Ms. Bhutto is in India to attend a seminar on `Fall of Dhaka.' On the sidelines of the seminar she met the Prime Minister, Atal Behari Vajpayee, and the Deputy Prime Minister, L.K. Advani.
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