Masood Azhar’s detention ‘a positive step’ by Pak: Congress

New Delhi, Jan. 14 (ANI): Congress leader Karan Singh on Thursday said the detention of Jaish-e-Muhammad (JeM) chief Maulana Masood Azhar by the Pakistan Government in connection with the Pathankot terror attack is a positive step, adding that New Delhi must hold talks with Islamabad as the neighbouring nation has for the first time accepted the obvious.

“Personally, I feel Pakistan has taken a positive step for the first time. The usual line of Pakistan was to be in denial, this time they have accepted the obvious. The fact that they have detained Masood Azhar and his brother is a hopeful sign,” Singh told ANI.

“Perhaps, their attitude is now changing and that would certainly be welcomed. I cannot say whether the Foreign Secretary-level talks will be held tomorrow or not, but there should be talks with Pakistan,” he added.

Pakistan has detained several militants belonging to JeM, including Masood Azhar, and sealed its offices, reported Pakistan media.

Media reports suggested that Masood Azhar was also taken into protective custody and was being questioned.

However, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) late on Wednesday evening said there was no official confirmation from Islamabad on Masood Azhar’s arrest.

“We have no official confirmation on the arrest of JeM chief Masood Azhar. We have seen the press release that has been put out by the Pakistani side, but we have no official confirmation on the arrest,” said MEA official spokesperson Vikas Swarup.

India likely to take a decision on whether to go ahead with the Foreign Secretary-level talks with Pakistan tomorrow.

External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj had a two-hour long meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi last evening.

According to reports, it has been decided to wait for the return of National Security Advisor Ajit Doval from Paris today for a final decision to be taken with regard to the talks. (ANI)

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