New Delhi, Dec 25 : Welcoming Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s decision to meet his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif in Lahore on Friday, the CPI said it would pave the way for strengthening the dialogue process with Islamabad.
“We welcome this move. This is Modi’s first visit to Pakistan and we welcome this decision of the PM. This is an unannounced and a surprise visit and such visits should happen more often,” Communist Party of India (CPI) leader D Raja said.
“This would only help in improving relationship with our neighbour and pave the way for strengthening the dialogue process,” he added.
“A number of times the talks were called off. The National Security Adviser-level talks in India were also cancelled but it later happened in Bangkok. It was followed by External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj’s visit to Pakistan. Now, the PM is also doing the same,” the leftist leader added.
Former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah also welcomed the move, but called for consistency. He also took a dig at the state government.
“Now waiting for the statement from J&K govt claiming that (chief minister) Mufti Mohammad Sayeed was the one who forced PM Modi to visit Lahore today. The re-engagement with Pakistan is a good step & a very welcome development. However, more than grand gestures we need consistency,” Abdullah tweeted.
“Indo-Pak relations have been plagued by knee-jerk reactions & a lack of consistency. Looking towards two PMs to correct this this time,” he further tweeted.
However, Janata Dal-United’s K.C. Tyagi said: “Modi is meeting Nawaz Sharif in Lahore; on the other hand our soldiers are getting killed in the border. How can the two things go hand in hand?”
PM Modi said he will meet his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif in Lahore on Friday afternoon on his way back to New Delhi from Kabul.