Bring back terrorists from Pakistan on your plane, minister tells Modi

Azam Khan's statement comes in the wake of Modi's acceptance of Nawaz's invite to visit Pakistan next year

Web Desk July 13, 2015
Senior Uttar Pradesh Minister Azam Khan PHOTO: AFP

JHANSI (UP): Senior Uttar Pradesh Minister Azam Khan on Sunday asked Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to bring back terrorists with him when he returns from Pakistan next year after the SAARC summit.

"The prime minister while returning should bring back terrorists wanted in the country in his own plane from Pakistan the way they were taken to Kandahar on a flight," UP Parliamentary Affairs and Urban Development minister said.

Read: Ufa meeting: Modi ready to visit Pakistan next year

Azam was referring to the Indian government's release of three terrorists, including Maulana Masood Azhar, in exchange for 155 passengers and crew members of the hijacked Indian Airlines plane, IC-814, which was taken to Kandahar in Afghanistan in 1999.

In addition to that, India has been seeking custody of Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi, the alleged mastermind of 26/11 Mumbai attacks, Jamaatud Dawa chief Hafiz Saeed and Dawood Ibrahim and his aides.

Read: Nawaz-Modi meet-up: India reluctant to revive composite dialogue

Last week during his meeting with Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in Russia, Modi accepted his counterpart's invite for his first visit to Pakistan for the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) summit to be held in Islamabad next year.

If this fructifies, Modi will be the first Indian premier after Atal Behari Vajpayee to visit Pakistan. Modi’s predecessor Manmohan Singh never visited Pakistan during the decade that he was the prime minister.

The latest meeting between the two premiers came against the backdrop of friction in ties between the two nuclear-armed neighbours due to a series of controversial statements made by the Indian political leadership. According to sources, Modi strongly raised the issue of the release of the alleged mastermind behind the Mumbai attacks, Zakiur Rahman Lakhvi, and asked Nawaz to take action against him during the meeting.

This article originally appeared on Economic Times.

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