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Imran considering inviting Modi for his oath ceremony

Imran 10

Lahore, July 31: Imran Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf is considering inviting the leaders of the SAARC countries including Prime Minister Narendra Modi to his oath taking ceremony as the premier next month, a party official said on Tuesday.

The PTI, led by 65-year-old Khan, has emerged as the single largest party in the National Assembly after the July 25 elections, but it is still short of numbers to form the government on its own. Khan yesterday said that he would take oath as prime minister on August 11.


“The core committee of Tehreek-i-Insaf is considering inviting the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) heads including Mr Modi and a decision on this is expected shortly,” a leader of Khan’s party told PTI.

He also termed Modi’s telephone call to Khan on his victory in the 2018 polls a welcoming sign to begin a new chapter in relations between the two countries.

Spokesperson for Khan’s party Fawad Chaudhry also did not rule out inviting Modi to the swearing in ceremony.

“A decision about it will be taken by the party in consultation with the foreign ministry in coming days,” he said.

Modi on Monday telephoned Khan to congratulate him on his party’s victory in the general elections and hoped that “Pakistan and India will work to open a new chapter in bilateral ties”.

Khan thanked Modi for his wishes and emphasised that disputes should be resolved through dialogue.

“Wars and bloodshed instead of resolving disputes lead to tragedies,” Khan had said.

Khan in his victory speech had also said that better relations between Pakistan and India would be “good for all of us”.

“If India’s leadership is ready, we are ready to improve ties with India. If you take on step forward we will take two steps forward,” he had said.

The relations between India and Pakistan remained tense since 2014. Former prime minister Nawaz Sharif had travelled to Delhi to attend Modi’s oath taking ceremony and the Indian premier had in December 2015 made a stopover in Lahore to greet his counterpart on his birthday.

The India-Pakistan ties nose-dived in recent years with no bilateral talks taking place.


Imran-Modi phone call :Hope it goes beyond optics: Mehbooba

Srinagar, July 31: After Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s telephonic conversation with Pakistan Tehreek Insaaf (PTI) chief Imran Khan congratulating him on his victory, former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti on Tuesday expressed hope that it would lead to a sustainable thaw in relations between the two neighbouring countries.

“Hope this goes beyond the optics and leads to a sustainable thaw between India and Pakistan,” Mufti wrote on Twitter.

The Prime Minister on Monday spoke to Khan and congratulated him for his party emerging as the largest political party in the National Assembly elections of Pakistan. Modi expressed hope that democracy would take deeper roots in the country and also reiterated his vision of peace and development in the entire neighbourhood.

PDP president Mufti, while addressing the party’s 19th foundation day ceremony on 28 July, had appealed to Modi to accept the hand of friendship and dialogue extended by Pakistan’s PTI leader for ending the bloodshed in the state.

“I appeal to Prime Minister Narendra Modi. A new government will be formed in Pakistan and there will be a new prime minister, who has extended a hand of friendship towards India. He spoke of dialogue. He should respond to it positively. It is my request that he should grab the opportunity and respond positively to the offer of friendship by Imran Khan,” Mehbooba said.

Mehbooba also congratulated Khan over his victory. “Congratulations to @ImranKhanPTI on his victory. His hard work and tenacity won the day,” the former chief minister wrote on Twitter.


Lashkar congratulates Imran

Srinagar, July 31: Militant outfit, Lashkar-e-Taiba, Tuesday congratulated Imran Khan, Chairman Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), for winning the elections and said that he has “found a place for himself in our hearts for speaking up for Kashmiris even before oath-taking ceremony.”

In an emailed statement to The Kashmir Monitor, Mahmood Shah, Chief LeT Jammu Kashmir said “Kashmiris see hope for a true Pakistan by witnessing Jammu Kashmir’s occupation as core issue.”

“We hope that you (Imran) will not be influenced by Indian propaganda and conspiracies. But rather we see you fulfilling a responsible role in saving the ones who are affected and bringing them their due justice,” the statement read.

“Media can bring any issue into limelight. We hope that a prominent policy will be carved for the Pakistani media to expose Indian ‘atrocities’,” the statement read.