India will continue to take “firm and decisive” steps against all attempts of militant infiltration till Pakistan initiates “credible and irreversible” action to end cross-border militancy and dismantles miliatnt infrastructure in the territory under its control, the External Affairs Ministry said on Thursday.
Replying to a question in the Rajya Sabha, Minister of State in the Ministry of External Affairs, V Muraleedharan, said the government desires normal neighbourly relations with Pakistan and is committed to addressing all outstanding issues bilaterally and peacefully in accordance with the Simla Agreement and the Lahore Declaration.
“However, any meaningful dialogue can only be held in an atmosphere free from terror, hostility and violence. The onus is on Pakistan to create such a conducive atmosphere,” he said.
“India has asked Pakistan to take credible and irreversible steps to end cross-border terrorism and dismantle terrorist infrastructure in territory under its control. Till then, India will continue to take firm and decisive steps to respond to all attempts at cross-border terrorist infiltration and supporting cover fire by Pakistan forces,” Muraleedharan said.
The minister said that as a result of the government’s persistent efforts, there is enhanced concern in the international community over militancy emanating from Pakistan, including the continuing activities of internationally designated entities and individuals such as Jamaat-ud Dawa (JuD), Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), Jaish-e-Mohammed and Hizbul Mujahideen.
“International community strongly condemned the attack in Pulwama in February 2019. Many countries have called upon Pakistan to not allow its territory to be used for terrorism in any manner,” he said.
“Many terrorist entities and individuals who find shelter in Pakistan and are also engaged in terrorism against India have been proscribed by the United Nations (UN), the European Union and other countries,” Muraleedharan said.
He said India’s call to condemn terrorism in all forms and manifestation, zero tolerance on terrorism, rejection of any justification for an act of terror, delinking terror from religion, need for all forces believing in humanity to unite in fight against terrorism has found greater acceptance among the international community. “It is reflected in a number of outcome documents issued after bilateral summit meetings with various countries, and at regional and multilateral fora, such as Shangai Cooperation Organization, G20, BRICS, among others,” he said.