M A I N   N E W S

Mumbai Heat
No legal aid for Kasab, says Pak
‘First prove that he is our citizen’

Islamabad, December 25
Pakistan will not act on the request for legal aid by Ajmal Amir Iman, the lone gunman captured for the Mumbai attacks, unless it is proved that he is a Pakistani national, interior ministry chief Rehman Malik has said.

"There is no question of consular access unless it is proved that Ajmal Kasab is a Pakistan national," Malik said on the sidelines of a function at the headquarters of the national database and registration authority (NADRA).

"We have thoroughly checked the registration record but have not found Ajmal Kasab's name in the NADRA database," he said.

“Therefore we are not sure whether he is a Pakistani. How we can give him consular access without having knowledge about his nationality?”

Iman, alias Ajmal Kasab, has written a letter to the Pakistani authorities seeking legal aid and the appointment of a lawyer to represent him. Malik had said on Tuesday that Pakistani officials were examining Iman's letter and would respond to it by Wednesday.

However, there has been no official response so far from the Pakistan government to Iman's letter. Pakistan has been insisting that India should share evidence and information to establish Iman's nationality and to take forward the probe into the Mumbai attacks.

Though Malik has contended that a scrutiny of NADRA records had not produced any information on a Pakistani national named Ajmal Kasab, the organisation’s database covers only 60 million of the country's total population of nearly 160 million. — PTI



We don’t want war with India: Gilani

Islamabad, December 25
Seeking to tone down the war hysteria, Pakistan Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani today said Pakistan did not want a conflict with India and was determined to foil the designs of “non-state actors” to use the country’s soil to indulge in terrorism anywhere.

Gilani said Pakistan wanted “excellent” relations with India even as he asked the international community to persuade New Delhi to defuse the current tensions.

“We understand India's pain as we are also affected by terrorism,” he said, adding: “Pakistan is a responsible country and is engaged in the war on terror. We don’t want terrorist attacks anywhere in the world, including India.”

Gilani said his country was ready to share intelligence with India. “We don’t want terrorism in any form to be encouraged.”

“I want to tell the world that as a responsible nation, we don't want war but...if war is imposed on us, the people, the leadership and the armed forces know how to defend the country,” he said in his third such assertions in as many days.

“Public pressure is increasing on them. When public pressure becomes too much, they naturally expect to indulge in some adventure. But I want to tell the nation and the whole world that Pakistan has no intention of going to war,” he said. — PTI



India maintains restraint on Rajasthan border
Jupinderjit Singh
Tribune News Service

Jodhpur, December 25
India is maintaining extreme restraint at the Indo-Pak border in the state amidst reports of army build-up on the other side (of the border), a defence spokesman said here today . While acknowledging more vigil was kept by Indian Air Force, the spokesman said the army was maintaining second line of defence.

Cautioning the media and asking reporters not to create panic by reports, he said it was a routine during these days to witness field firing and other activities. These should, however, not be correlated with Indo-Pak tension. Meanwhile, mediapersons from Bikaner were taken to Ranjitpura post on the border where BSF was maintaining a vigil. The reporters were, however, kept away from the border. "We are alert for any eventuality. But there is no war-like situation for the time being. We are more vigilant in view of prevailing tension between the two countries. Otherwise, there is no reason for any tension," the spokesperson added.



HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Letters | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |