Parties split over PM’s ‘hasty’ invite to Sharif

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New Delhi/Srinagar: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s invite to PML-N leader Nawaz Sharif to visit India after his party’s win in Pakistan’s parliamentary polls drew a mixed response on Monday with BJP saying he is in “haste” and mainstream parties in Jammu and Kashmir welcoming the move.
The opposition BJP was of the view that the Prime Minister should have waited and first assessed any positive change in Pakistan’s attitude towards India.
The PM’s move, however, got the backing of ruling National Conference and opposition PDP in J&K.
Union minister and NC leader Farooq Abdullah said the invitation extended by the prime minister was a “welcome and bold step” while PDP president Mehbooba Mufti said it offered a great opportunity for the leadership of India and Pakistan to “chart a new course” in bilateral relations.
“The Prime Minister has been in too much of a haste to invite Nawaz Sharif. In fact, we should have waited to see what changes come about in Pakistan's attitude towards India and if there were some positive signs, surely he would have invited him,” BJP vice president Balbir Punj said.
The BJP leader said it was too early to invite Sharif as he was yet to take over as the Prime Minister in Pakistan.

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