We Won’t Fire First, Rajnath Tells Pak Rangers


New Delhi: Maintaining India’s bid for peace, Home Minister Rajnath Singh on Friday told a delegation of Pakistan Rangers that “Indian forces will not fire the first bullet along the International border.”

“India wants friendly relations with all its neighbours. India will not fire the first bullet towards Pakistan along the border,” Rajnath Singh told the delegation of Pakistan Rangers, headed by its DG Maj Gen Umar Farooq Burki.

In his response, Burki told Singh that he was the “mere DG of a force and not the leadership” like the home minister and could not give any commitment in this regard.

Burki, however, said that he would convey Singh’s message to the Pakistani leadership. The home minister further told the Pakistan Rangers delegation that it should be ensured that no infiltration takes place from Pakistan to India.

He also said that both India and Pakistan must unite against the menace of terrorism.

“Like India, Pakistan, too, is a victim of terrorism,” he told the Pakistani delegation.

Singh said India wanted to engage in dialogue with Pakistan at different levels and that was why Prime Minister Narendra Modi had recently met his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif at Ufa in Russia.

“Unfortunately, the NSA level talks did not take place. But we want to have a good relation with Pakistan. I am saying this not for formality’s sake, but ‘tah-e-dil-se’ (from the bottom of the heart),” he said.

Quoting former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, Singh further said that “we can change friends, but not the neighbours” and that was why it was necessary to have cordial relations with all neighbouring countries.