New Delhi, Nov.22 (ANI): Ahead of a key visit to the United States where he will be the first head of state or government to be received and feted by President Barack Obama since he took office in January 2009, Indian Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh has reiterated his unhappiness over Pakistan efforts in bringing the culprits of the6/11 terror attack on Mumbai to book.
In an interview given to the Editor of Newsweek International, Fareed Zakaria, in CNN's Global Public Square (GPS) program here ahead of his four-day trip to Washington, Dr. Singh said: "Pakistan has not done enough with regard to pursuing the perpetrators of the Mumbai terror attacks."
Recalling his one-to-one interaction with Pakistan Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani in the Egyptian seaside resort of Sharm-el-Sheikh in July this year, Dr. Singh said that when he raised the issue with Prime Minister Gilani, the latter had promised that his government would do the needful and take every possible legal step to bring the persons responsible for the incident to book.
Yet, he said, that almost a year after the attacks that claimed over 170 innocent lives, militants like Masood Azhar and Hafeez Saeed, and other terrorists continued to move around freely on Pakistan soil, apparently with the backing of the Pakistan Government.
What was even more lamentable was the fact that the Indian Government has provided every evidence demanded by Pakistan to substantiate the charge that the attack was commandeered from Pakistani soil, though seven dossiers collated by various investigative agencies, and each time, Islamabad has responded by saying that the evidence is not enough, faulty and unproven. Singh said.
"An active Pakistan (Government) would not allow this (free movement of terrorists)," said Singh.
The Indian Prime Minister also expressed his concern and worry about the safety of Pakistan's nuclear arsenal, and the possibility of it falling into wrong hands.
"We worry about these contingencies. But, we have been assured by thenited States, the Americans," said Singh.
On the prevailing situation in Afghanistan, Dr. Singh told CNN's GPS program that a decade ago, the emergence of the Taliban had created a problem in the South Asian and Central Asian region, and its disappearance post 9/11 was a blessing.
Asked how he saw Afghanistan emerging as nation from years and decades of war-ravaged ruin, he said that it was for Afghan President Hamid Karzai to take responsibility in his second term to harmonize and bringing together all elements in Afghanistan with the help of a purposeful government.
He welcomed the US initiative to work for a better, improved and democratic Afghanistan, but was very skeptical about Pakistan's objections in that country.
"Pakistan's objectives in Afghanistan not necessarily in harmony with American objectives. Having said that, who am I to judge whether the Pakistan Government and the Pakistan Army is moving to remove the Afghan Taliban," said Singh.
Insofar as who was running Pakistan, Dr. Singh appeared quite emphatic when he stated that the Pakistan Army is running the country.
"It is not clear if the President (Zardari) is in charge of the army," Singh added. (ANI)