India combats Pak lies with sharp wit at UN
New York, September 26, 2003 (ANI):
India and Pakistan sparred yet again at the end of the day today, when the Indian Prime Minister delivered his address to the United Nations General Assembly.
Pakistan exercised its Right of Reply (ROR), and in two sharply worded speeches, a Pakistani diplomat said: “We can concede that India knows a lot about terrorism because it is the mother of terrorism.”
He then accused India of promoting cross-border terrorism. “During the past few years, India’s security agency RAW (Research and Analysis Wing), has carried out 170 acts of terrorism in Pakistan and 279 of its agents have been apprehended. Not just in Pakistan, but agents of the Indian Government acting on the ruling BJP’s directive, also committed state-managed massacre of Indian Muslims and genocides,” he said.
He said a party, which had a “fascist doctrine”, ruled India. Examples were given of Bal Thackeray forming alleged terrorist groups to eliminate Muslims.
The Indian delegation gave a befitting yet mature reply. Counsellor Harshvardhan Shingla said Pakistan protested too much, and that was reason enough to suspect. Pakistan, he said had a “foreign policy that relied traditionally on camouflage and doublespeak”.
Though he didn’t call the Pakistani diplomat a liar, he couched his word in “diplomatese” by saying Pakistan’s history and policies are “rooted in political fiction”.
When the Pakistani delegation tried to take the credit of “the hand of friendship” making it seem as if the initiative came from General Musharraf, the Indian diplomat dismissed it as “Pakistan’s diplomacy of abuse and hate” terming all that poor Munir Akram, Permanent Representative of Pakistan to the UN, had to say as “egregious comments”.
The war of words was the expected end to the India-Pak spat at the UN, which began as soon as the Pakistan President, Gen Pervez Musharraf, started with his media interviews.
The Indian side was remarkably restrained till today. After four long days of perfect gentlemanly behaviour, it was as if the floodgates had opened. The one who opened these was none other than the Prime Minister. He snubbed Pakistan and its Chief Executive and then it was no holds barred by evening. The Indian attack was, however, classically diplomatic in nature as opposed to the street fighting tenor of the Pakistanis.
Then there was the body language. The Indian side was smirking all through the speeches made by the Pakistanis, who had to be cut short due to time. The Indian response was well within the time limit. It was erudite, witty and brief. The Pakistani accusation and response was repetitive (Kashmir, genocide, human rights), audacious (numbers dead, numbers of terrorist attacks), rambling (getting into internal politics of India) and false (peace offer Musharraf’s not Vajpayee’s when every world leader has commended Vajpayee) and seemed just a rehash of Gen Musharraf’s speech.
|I am the Editor News, at Asian News International (ANI), India’s leading Multimedia News Agency and the India Correspondent for Channel News Asia, a Singapore based broadcaster.|
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