New Delhi, July 16 (ANI): External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna on Friday delivered a measured and mature rebuttal to Pakistani counterpart Shah Mahmood Qureshi's attempt to make a comparison between the statements made by Jamaat-ud-Dawa chief Hafiz Saeed and Indian Home Secretary G.K. Pillai.
Addressing an impromptu news conference soon after arriving in Delhi from Islamabad, Krishna said there was no question of making a comparison between the two.
"Where is the comparison? Hafiz Saeed - He is a person speaking out of turn against India, crying for jihad against India. We have always said that such people inside Pakistan, who incite anti-India propaganda, anti-India statements and feelings, will not help to smoothen ties between our two countries," said Krishna responding to questions on his return to Delhi from a three-day visit to the Pakistan capital.
Commenting on statements made by Mr. Pillai, Krishna said his statement was not anything new, and was already in the public domain. Pillai's statement was based on revelations made by David Coleman Headley, one of the prime movers behind the 26/11 attacks, during his interrogation by FBI investigators.
"There is absolutely no comparison between the two," he added.
Krishna's reaction came a day after Pakistan Foreign Minister Qureshi, while responding to a question from an India journalist, said that both sides should not let the climate of engagement be vitiated by these speeches, and refrain from negative propaganda against each other.
Qureshi also took potshots at Indian officialdom.
He said: "When you point out to Saeed's speech, or speeches, let me draw your attention to the Indian Home Secretary's (G.K. Pillai) statement. The dialogue which was reported in all Pakistani papers. Tell me, to what extent it has helped? We were of the opinion that it was uncalled for," suggesting that Foreign Minister Krishna agreed with him.
In effect, Qureshi sought to equate Indian Home Secretary G.K. Pillai, a veteran civil administrator with nearly four decades of experience with Saeed, a man with alleged, if not certain, terrorist links and antecedents.
It maybe recalled that Pillai had cited the information provided by accused Lashkar-e-Toiba recruit David C Headley regarding the involvement of Pakistan's spy agency - the Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) -- and Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD) chief Hafiz Saeed in the 26/11 attack during his interrogation in Chicago by FBI and Indian investigators.
Pakistan said it was disappointed with Pillai's remarks and its timing, as it was delivered on the eve of the foreign minister-level talks. (ANI)