Foreign minister Sushma Swaraj will address UNGA on Saturday. On Friday, she ‘strongly raised’ the H-1B visa issue with US officials.
New Delhi/New York: After Pakistan PM Shahid Khaqan Abbasi raked up the Kashmir issue at the UN General Assembly, India hit out at Pakistan at the United Nations on Friday, describing it as “Terroristan”, a land of “pure terror” that hosts a flourishing industry to produce and export global terror as well as a “failed state”.
In a no-holds-barred speech at the General Assembly, the first secretary at India’s permanent mission to the UN, Eenam Gambhir, said: “It is extraordinary that the state which protected terrorist Osama bin Laden and sheltered Mullah Omar should have the gumption to play victim.” The India-Pakistan clash at the UN is one more instance of the rock-bottom ties between the two, with New Delhi naming and shaming Islamabad by reminding the world of how the Pakistan Army gave refuge to Osama bin Laden. India was exercising its right to reply after the Pakistan PM’s speech. New Delhi also reminded the world of how UN-designated terror outfit Lashkar-e-Tayyaba chief Hafiz Saeed was being allowed to float a political party in that country.
After India’s reply, Pakistan too hit back, saying national security adviser Ajit Doval’s “offensive defence and double squeeze” strategy to make India a regional hegemon would never succeed. Earlier, Pakistan PM Abbasi also accused India of indulging in terror activities against his country and warned of a “matching response” if it “ventures across the LoC” or acts upon its “doctrine of limited war against Pakistan”. He urged the UN to appoint a special envoy to Kashmir, claiming that the struggle of the people in the region was being “brutally suppressed” by India.
But soundly blasting Pakistan at the UN, Ms Gambhir said: “In its short history, Pakistan has become a geography synonymous with terror. The quest for a land of the pure has actually produced ‘the land of pure terror’. Pakistan is now ‘Terroristan’, with a flourishing industry producing and exporting global terrorism... Terroristan is in fact a territory whose contribution to the globalisation of terror is unparalleled.” She added: “Its current state can be gauged from the fact that Hafiz Mohammed Saeed, a leader of the UN-designated terrorist organisation Lashkar-e-Tayyaba, is now sought to be legitimised as a leader of a political party.”
Blasting Pakistan, a furious India further said: “This is a country whose counter-terrorism policy is to mainstream and upstream terrorists by either providing safe havens to global terror leaders in its military town, or protecting them with political careers.”
She said: “By now, all Pakistan’s neighbours are painfully familiar with these tactics to create a narrative based on distortions, deception and deceit.” The Indian diplomat added: “None of this can justify Pakistan’s avaricious efforts to covet the territories of its neighbours... Pakistan must understand that the state of Jammu and Kashmir is and will always remain an integral part of India. However much it scales up cross- border terrorism, it will never succeed in undermining India’s territorial integrity.”
New Delhi further said: “Having diverted billions of dollars in international military and development aid towards creating a dangerous infrastructure of terror on its own territory, Pakistan is now speaking of the high cost of its terror industry. The polluter, in this case, is paying the price.”
Ms Gambhir added: “Even as terrorists thrive in Pakistan and roam its streets with impunity, we have heard it lecture about the protection of human rights in India. The world does not need lessons on democracy and human rights from a country whose own situation is charitably described as a failed state.”
Finally, New Delhi ended the tongue-lashing by saying: “Pakistan can only be counselled to abandon a destructive worldview that has caused grief to the entire world. It could be persuaded to demonstrate any commitment to civilisation, order and to peace, it may still find some acceptance in the comity of nations.”
Exercising its right of reply in the General Assembly later, a rattled Pakistan said it was “unfortunate” that India had chosen to criticise the statement of PM Abbasi on J&K “which reflects the sentiments and aspirations of the oppressed and suffering people” of the Valley.