India’s Expectation From Pakistanis ‘Never Very High’: Jaishankar On Bilawal Bhutto’s Remarks

In his first remarks on the controversy regarding Pakistan minister Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari’s remarks against Prime Minister Narendra Modi, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Monday said that India’s level of expectation from Pakistanis was “never very high.”

Bhutto’s personal attack on PM Modi has evoked a strong reaction in India, with the Bharatiya Janata Party holding protests against him in various cities.

“I think my ministry has said very clearly what we think about what he (Pakistan foreign minister) said. We said what we had to say,” Jaishankar said at a conclave held by a media house.

Responding to whether he was upset over the remarks made against PM Modi, Jaishankar said, “Our expectation levels with the Pakistanis are never very high.”

The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) on Friday described Bhutto-Zardari’s remarks as “uncivilised” and said they were a “new low” even for Pakistan.

The MEA spokesperson Arindam Bagchi on Friday strongly condemning Bhutto-Zardari’s remarks said that the Pakistan foreign minister’s “frustration” would be better directed towards the masterminds of “terrorist enterprises in his own country” that has made terrorism a part of their “state policy”.

“Pakistan is a country that glorifies Osama bin Laden as a martyr, and shelters terrorists like Lakhvi, Hafiz Saeed, Masood Azhar, Sajid Mir and Dawood Ibrahim. No other country can boast of having 126 UN-designated terrorists and 27 UN-designated terrorist entities,” Bagchi stated.

The Pakistan foreign minister resorted to a personal attack on PM Modi and slammed the RSS after External Affairs Minister Jaishankar told the UN Security Council that the “contemporary epicentre of terrorism” remains very much active and called for collective action to tackle them.

Though Jaishankar did not name any countries, it was apparent that he was making a veiled reference to Pakistan.

Later, he told reporters in New York that the world sees Pakistan as the epicentre of terrorism and recalled US leader Hillary Clinton’s blunt message to Islamabad in 2011 that snakes in one’s backyard will eventually bite those who keep them. 

(With inputs from PTI)

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