India lacks courage to unearth role of Hindu extremists: Pak

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Rezaul H Laskar

Islamabad, Feb 5 (PTI) On the eve of ForeignSecretary-level talks in Thimphu, Pakistan today came out witha provocative statement saying that India''s handling of theSamjhauta Express train bombing case showed that it lacked"courage to unearth culpability of Hindu extremists".

"India seems to be lacking courage to unearthculpability of Hindu extremists and their links with someIndian Army personnel," Foreign Office spokesman Abdul Basitsaid in a statement that may not go down well with New Delhi.

India''s handling of the 2007 Samjhauta Express bombingcase "doesn''t inspire much hope", he said.

The spokesman emphasised that India "needs to bridgethe gap between what it says and what it does".

Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao will meet her Pakistanicounterpart Salman Bashir in the Bhutanese capital tomorrow tomake a fresh attempt to restart the bilateral dialogue processstalled since the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks.

The Indian side is expected to seek an update fromPakistan on the Mumbai attacks investigations and trial.

This will be the first meeting between the ForeignSecretaries after the failed talks between the ForeignMinisters in July last year in Pakistan.

Pakistan has been calling for action against thoseresponsible for bombing the cross-border train ever since RSSleader Swami Aseemanand recently confessed to a special courtin India about the involvement of Sangh activists in severalterror attacks, including the assault on the Samjhauta trainthat runs between the two countries.

Basit said it was "unfortunate that India, which usesterrorism as propaganda against Pakistan, has still not beenable to complete its investigations into the Samjhauta Expressblasts".

He added: "Even after the lapse of four years, Indiasomewhat conveniently asserts that its investigations areincomplete. We do not know how many more years India wouldneed to bring the perpetrators of the Samjhauta terrorist actto justice, and provide relief to the families of the 68victims, including 42 Pakistan nationals."

On the other hand, India has criticized Pakistan''shandling of the prosecution of seven suspects, includingLashkar-e-Taiba commander Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi, who have beencharged with planning, financing and executing the 2008 Mumbaiattacks.

The trial has been affected by several proceduraldelays and the judge has been changed thrice.

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