March 15, 2016 7:52:57 pm
Hardline separatist leader Syed Ali Geelani and Asiya Andrabi among others have been invited by Pakistan to attend ‘Pakistan Day’ function at its High Commission in Delhi.
Besides them, Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) chief Yasin Malik and Hurriyat’s moderate faction chairman Mirwaiz Umar Farooq have also been called to attend the event, official sources said.
Pakistan’s envoy Abdul Basit has invited Hurriyat leaders including Geelani, Andrabi, Malik, Farooq and others to attend the ‘Pakistan Day’ function on March 23, they said.
Minister of State in Prime Minister’s Office Jitendra Singh has also been invited to the function. However, sources said it is unlikely that he will attend the function.
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Pakistan has been inviting separatist leaders every year to attend the ‘Pakistan Day’ function at its High Commission in the national capital.
Minister of State for External Affairs V K Singh had represented the government at the Pakistan National Day reception last year.
The meetings of Kashmiri Hurriyat leaders with Pakistani establishments have always raised eyebrows here. In August last year, a controversy had erupted over the proposed meeting between former Pakistan’s National Security Adviser Sartaz Aziz and Hurriyat leaders ahead of NSA-level talks in India.
India had then advised Pakistan that it would not be appropriate for Sartaz Aziz to meet with the Hurriyat representatives. Pakistan had then called off the NSA talks between the two nations.
The two NSAs were scheduled to meet in New Delhi for talks on terrorism-related issues for the first time on August 23.
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