Narendra Modi, Nawaz Sharif bid to reset ties

Published May 28, 2014, 7:01 am IST
Updated Jan 10, 2016, 8:38 am IST
PM takes up 26/11 trial, accepts invite to visit Pakistan
 Prime Minister Narendra Modi with his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif during refreshments and dinner after the swearing-in-ceremony at Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi on Monday. (Photo: PTI)

New Delhi: On his first full day in office, Prime Minister Narendra Modi talked tough on terror to visiting Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif here Tuesday, even bringing up the lack of progress on Pakistan’s 26/11 investigations. But at the end of the bilateral meeting, there were clear signals that the two neighbours are willing to make the necessary efforts to resume the stalled dialogue process.

After the talks that lasted nearly 60 minutes at Hyderabad House here Tuesday afternoon, the two leaders agreed that their foreign secretaries will meet soon to examine how the bilateral agenda can be taken forward. Mr Modi also accepted an invitation from his Pakistani counterpart to visit that country, though the dates are yet to be worked out.

Mr Sharif, who read out a statement to the waiting media shortly before his departure for Islamabad, said he had urged Mr Modi “that we had to strive to change confrontation into cooperation”. He also told the new Indian PM that “engaging in accusations and counter-accusations would be counter-productive”.

Foreign secretary Sujatha Singh, sharing details of the meeting between the two leaders, said that Mr Modi had raised India’s concerns on terrorism. On 26/11, Mr Modi told the Pakistan PM he hoped the necessary steps would be taken to expedite the 26/11 trials in that country to ensure punishment for the accused.

The Pakistan PM who, in a warm gesture, also visited former Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee on Tuesday, reiterated in his statement that he intends to pick up the threads from where he and Mr Vajpayee had left off in 1999.