Finance Minister Arun Jaitley unlikely to attend the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (Saarc) Finance Ministers’ summit in Islamabad on 25 and 26 August, government sources said.
Instead of him, Finance Secretary Shashikant Das will represent the country, ANI reported.
Jaitley, who was expected to take part in the meet reportedly called off his visit to the neighboring country, after the Home Minister Rajnath Singh was snubbed by Pakistan, during his last visit to the country to attend SAARC Home Ministers’ conference.
During Rajnath’s visit, Pakistan has blocked media from covering his speech in the conference where he came down heavily against sponsoring terrorism.
In the speech, taking a dig at Pakistan, Singh had opposed the act of glorifying terrorists as ‘martyrs.’
“I did not see whether my speech was covered live or not. The media personnel from DD, ANI and PTI reporters who had come from India were not allowed to enter,” Singh said in Parliament while talking about media blockade in Pakistan.
Singh was also snubbed by Pakistan Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan while he was in Islamabad. In a bid to provoke India, Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif had also talked about “freedom movement” in Kashmir, while Singh was there.
FM Arun Jaitley to not attend SAARC FMs conference in Pakistan, Economic Affairs Secretary Shaktikanta Das to represent India:Govt Sources
— ANI (@ANI_news) August 16, 2016
The decision of FM to skip the summit seems to make noise from multiple corners as the tension between India and Pakistan escalating after Hizbul Mujahideen militant Burhan Wani was killed by Indian army in Kashmir.
Islamabad had accused India of violating human rights in Kashmir, as the curfew going on in the state for 39 consecutive days with death toll reached 60.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, while addressing the nation on the Independence Day has also criticized Pakistan saying that many people living in Baluchistan and Pakistan-Occupied Kashmir have thanked him for openly talking about the human rights’ violation in both the regions.
PM will make the final decision upon FM’s visit to Pakistan, NDTV reported.