Modi messages Imran, extends ‘best wishes’ for national day

Islamabad: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday said he had received a message from Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi in which the latter extended “greetings & best wishes to the people of Pakistan on the National Day of Pakistan”.

“It is time that [the people] of Sub-continent work together for a democratic, peaceful, progressive & prosperous region, in an atmosphere free of terror and violence,” Modi said in the message, according to a tweet by Prime Minister Khan.

This is the first amicable gesture by India since the February 14 Pulwama attack, following which the nuclear-armed neighbours came to the brink of war.

In what was the most serious military crisis in South Asia since 2008, Indian and Pakistani warplanes engaged in a dogfight on Feb 27, a day after a raid by Indian jet fighters on what New Delhi said was a militant camp in Pakistan. Islamabad denied any militant camp exists in the area and said the Indian bombs exploded on an empty hillside.

Pakistan downed an Indian plane for violating its airspace and captured its pilot after he ejected in Azad Jammu and Kashmir.

The tensions de-escalated after Prime Minister Khan decided to releasethe Indian pilot as a peace gesture, and following concerted diplomatic efforts by countries including the United States, China and the UAE.

The Indian government, which is seeking re-election in next month’s national polls, had responded to Islamabad’s peace gesture and offer for dialogue with effective silence.

This is the first amicable gesture by India since the February 14 Pulwama attack, following which the nuclear-armed neighbours came to the brink of war.

In what was the most serious military crisis in South Asia since 2008, Indian and Pakistani warplanes engaged in a dogfight on Feb 27, a day after a raid by Indian jet fighters on what New Delhi said was a militant camp in Pakistan. Islamabad denied any militant camp exists in the area and said the Indian bombs exploded on an empty hillside.

Pakistan downed an Indian plane for violating its airspace and captured its pilot after he ejected in Azad Jammu and Kashmir.

The tensions de-escalated after Prime Minister Khan decided to releasethe Indian pilot as a peace gesture, and following concerted diplomatic efforts by countries including the United States, China and the UAE.

The Indian government, which is seeking re-election in next month’s national polls, had responded to Islamabad’s peace gesture and offer for dialogue with effective silence.

AlamulKhabar Pakistan