It's new govt's prerogative: Cong on invite to SAARC leaders

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Modi invites SAARC leaders on May 26
New Delhi, May 21: Congress on Thursday said it was the new government's prerogative to invite SAARC Heads of State and Government including Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif to Narendra Modi's swearing-in as Prime Minister on May 26.

"There is no question of not welcoming. It is the Prime Minister's prerogative to call any foreign dignitary. We are certainly not here to interfere. It is part of governance", party spokesperson Abhishek Singhvi told reporters.

He was asked whether the Congress welcomed the invitation by India to SAARC leaders to attend Modi's swearing-in ceremony.

Apart from Sharif, Sri Lanka President President Mahinda Rajapaksa, Bangladesh Premier Sheikh Hasina, Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai, Bhutan Prime Minister Tshering Tobgay, Nepal Prime Minister Sushil Koirala and Maldivian President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom have been invited for the ceremony.

Congress: There is no question of not welcoming SAARC leaders

This is for the first time these foreign leaders are invited to a Prime Minister's swearing-in ceremony. Modi will be administered the oath as 15th Prime Minister of the country by President Pranab Mukherjee at the forecourt of the historic Rashtrapati Bhavan here which will be attended by over 3000 guests.

BJP had a landslide victory in the just-concluded polls to elect members of the 16th Lok Sabha and crossed the majority mark of 272 in the 543-member House on its own for the first time in its history.

PTI

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