Rehman Malik shocker: Don't know whether Kargil martyr Captain Saurabh Kalia died of Pakistan bullet or weather

Rehman Malik
As a debate raged over torture of Kargil martyr Captain Saurabh Kalia by Pakistan army, Pakistan Interior Minister Rehman Malik today said he was not aware whether he "died of a Pak bullet or weather".

The Supreme Court earlier today sought a response from the Centre the plea of the Kargil martyr's father N K Kalia seeking its direction to the government for raising the case of his son's torture at the International Court of Justice. His mutilated body was handed over to Indian army during the1999 conflict.

"I have not examined the case. It has just come to my notice. I will be very happy to see the father of the boy, the father of the soldier, and I will shake hand and will like to know what has happened exactly.

"And especially when a fight is going on in the border, we really don't know whether he died of a Pak bullet or he died of weather?," Malik told reporters on his arrival here.

Captain Kalia of 4 Jat had led the first team which reported intrusion in the Kargil Sector by the Pakistani soldiers. During the reconnaissance, he along with five others were captured on May 15, 1999.

After 20 days, their severely mutilated bodies were handed over to India. The autopsy report revealed extreme ante-mortem torture which included cigarette burns, piercing of ear drums with hot iron rods and amputated vital organs.

Malik said, "Whenever any human being dies nobody would hesitate to say sorry for that.

"When there is war, bullet doesn't see who is there? ...You see the situation there (Kargil), and that is why you see the statement of President of Pakistan and also the vision of your Prime Minister. What we want is peace. So, we don't want these things to be repeated. That's why I am here, that's why we will work," he said at the airport.

The Interior Minister, who is on a three-day visit to India, said he was working for peace.

Rehman Malik hitches ride on Pakistan Air Force aeroplane, sets India all aflutter

Pakistan Interior Minister Rehman Malik's arrival here today on a three-day visit to the country was delayed by four hours after he took a Pakistan Air Force (PAF) plane in a change of plans that required fresh clearance from the Indian side.

According to official sources here, Pakistan informed India only late last night that Malik along with a 13-member official delegation and five media persons will be taking a PAF plane.

The sources said during the exchange of details of the itinerary of Malik, Pakistan informed India he would be travelling by a special aircraft for which the authorities gave clearance for landing at the Palam Technical area.

As per set procedures and international protocol, the IAF has to check the number of crew and ascertain the type of equipments if a military plane is used.

After getting necessary details from the Pakistani side, the plane was cleared for landing but only at the civilian side of the airport and not at the technical area.

Mailk, who was originally scheduled to land at 2 p.m, finally landed at 6 p.m.

No love lost for Hafeez Sayeed, but Pak will not take action over Mumbai attack sans proof: Malik

Notwithstanding pressure from India, Pakistan's Interior Minister Rehman Malik today gave no indication of action being taken against 26/11 mastermind Hafiz Saeed, saying there was no credible evidence to arrest him.

"We have no love lost for Hafiz Saeed. If I got the information today before I leave from here, I will order his arrest," Malik told reporters on his arrival here on a three-day visit during which the visa agreement signed by the two countries in September will be operationalised.

Malik said there has been lot of propaganda and there has been lot of pressure on Pakistan. "I have been receiving dossiers with only information," Malik said, adding Saeed had been arrested on three occasions.

New Delhi has conveyed its strong concerns over Saeed being allowed to roam freely in Pakistan and also indulge in provocative anti-india rhetoric.

Malik said a mere statement of Lashhker-e-Taiba terrorist Ajmal Kasab, who was executed on November 21, about Saeed's involvement in the 2008 Mumbai attacks could not be the only evidence to nail Saeed. "It needs further corroboration," he added.

"I will make public official documents from the court's judgement where Hafiz Saeed has been declared innocent," he said.

He said Pakistan was still investigating and if there is some evidence, necessary action will be taken.

On the issue of terrorism, Malik said non-state actors had been playing havoc with the relationship between the two countries, both facing the scourge for many years.

The minister said he had come with a message of peace and wanted to move in a positive direction.

"I do not want any negativity today. What I want is a positive message, positive view forward and let's forget the dark days. Let's enter with shining stars, with smiling faces and clear hearts."

On Samjhuta investigations, Malik again said "let's not create any negativity..." and the talks on this issue is an ongoing process and it continues.

On Kasab's hanging, he said "we have categorically stated that we should respect each other's court verdicts."

About his visit, he said it was necessary for building close people-to-people contacts. "Any country, especially neighbouring countries, cannot encourage friendship between them as long as common people don't interact."

Will again invite PM Singh to visit Pakistan: Rehman Malik

Islamabad: Interior Minister Rehman Malik today said he would reiterate government's invitation to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to visit Pakistan during his trip to India.

President Asif Ali Zardari had already invited Singh to visit Pakistan, Malik told the media before leaving for Delhi.

"I would also invite the Indian Prime Minister for a visit on behalf of our leadership," he said.

Malik is visiting the Indian capital for the operationalisation of a new visa agreement signed by the two countries in September.

He described the visa accord as a gift from the leadership of both countries to future generations as peace and stability between the two sides would usher in a new era of progress and development.

People from India and Pakistan, especially senior citizens, businessmen, traders and journalists, can easily visit both countries to further enhance trade and cultural relations, he said.

Malik claimed his visit to India was a "victory for peace and those who wanted to see an improvement in Pakistan-India relations".

He said that during his visit, he would give message to the world that Pakistan and India are peace-loving nations that believe in coexistence and want to live as peaceful neighbours.

Earlier in the day, Indian High Commissioner Sharat Sabharwal met Malik ahead of his visit to Delhi.

Malik and the Indian envoy discussed "bilateral relations and matters of mutual interest", Pakistani officials said.

They also discussed the new visa pact.

Ahead of Malik's arrival in Delhi, External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid said India had seen "little progress" as far as accountability by Pakistan for the Mumbai attacks is concerned.

Pakistani authorities arrested seven men, including Lashkar-e-Taiba operations commander Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi, for alleged involvement in the 2008 Mumbai attacks that killed 166 people. However, their trial has been hit by several delays.

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