NEW DELHI: Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday stated that due to his diplomatic efforts, the world has seen that India is not reluctant to engage with Pakistan and the world is unanimously appreciating India’s position and stance on Pakistan.
“Our approach has created difficulties for Pakistan, and they find it hard to respond on the matter in the international community,” said the Indian prime minister in an interview with an Indian news channel.
Modi claimed there are “different types of forces operating in Pakistan”, and asked rhetorically if one has to draw a line or set conditions for dialogue, will it be “with the elected government or other actors?”
“The government (of India) only engages with a democratically elected system and that effort is continuing with India’s supreme objective being bringing peace and putting the country’s interests first,” said Modi.
Modi also said India seeks friendly relations but without compromising on Indian interests.
“That is the reason my country’s soldiers have full freedom to answer back in whatever manner they have to and they will keep doing that,” said the Indian prime minister.
Modi also took credit for apprising the world about India’s take on terrorism with Pakistan in a successful manner.
He added that in the past, the world never accepted India’s version related to terrorism and at times even dismissed it by terming it as India’s law and order problem but “today the world has to accept what India has been saying about terrorism”.
“India has to fight poverty, do does Pakistan. Why don’t we come together to fight poverty,” said the Indian premier, softening his tone.
When asked about India’s deepening relations with the US in context with Pakistan, Modi claimed Indian relations with the US are based on India’s own interests and Pakistan context is different and not comparable.
“I would especially like to appeal to my country’s media that we should stop looking at everything in India from the prism of Pakistan. It has been our biggest shortcoming and our mistake that we have been tagging ourselves with another country,” stated the Indian PM.
When asked about China’s recent diplomatic efforts which stonewalled India’s attempt to ban Masood Azhar in the UN, and opposing the country’s bid to enter the Nuclear Supplier’s Group (NSG), Modi stated that India has multiple problems with China, which are pending, but dialogue the mighty neighbor is the only way forward.
“There are some basic differences. But the most important thing is that we can speak to China eye-to-eye and put forth India’s interests in the most unambiguous manner. We are a government that takes care of India’s interests. We don’t compromise on this. Three days ago I met the Chinese President. I told him clearly about India’s interests. They are a different country, we are a different country,” said Modi.
China had earlier blocked India’s call to ban Jaish-i-Muhammad chief Masood Azhar at the United Nations (UN). China had also said earlier in June that India’s admission to the elite Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) is not on the agenda of the grouping that started a plenary session in Seoul.
China has been leading a group of nations that are holding out against India’s membership to the 48-nation club that controls access to nuclear technology.