Cong welcomes BJP govt’s stand for denying Trump’s statement

New Delhi: The Congress today welcomed the government’s reiteration of India’s ‘no third party involvement’ stand on the Kashmir issue but asked why  Prime Minister Narendra Modi is ‘mum’ over US President Donald Trump’s claim that the Indian leader asked him to mediate on the matter.

India denied Trump’s claim that Modi had asked him to mediate in resolving the Kashmir issue with Pakistan. Trump’s offer to mediate on the Kashmir issue came as he met Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan at the White House on Monday when the two leaders discussed a host of issues.

Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar tweeted, “We have seen @POTUS’s remarks to the press that he is ready to mediate, if requested by India & Pakistan, on Kashmir issue. No such request has been made by PM @narendramodi to US President.”

Reacting to the MEA’s assertion, Congress’ chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala said reiteration of time tested line on ‘no mediation on Kashmir’ is welcome.

The US President’s remarks ‘relate to a meeting between him and PM Modi, wherein our PM had asked him to mediate’, he said in a tweet.

“Why is PM ‘mum’ on what transpired between the two heads of states, more so when it affects our sovereignty?” Surjewala asked.

In another tweet, he tagged the remarks of President Trump put out by the White House.

“Now, ‘Whitehouse’ puts up @POTUS assertion in ‘black & white’ that PM Modi asked him to ‘mediate on Kashmir’!” he said

“When will our PM ‘wake up’ & call the bluff if President Trump is lying? Or Did PM Modi ask @POTUS to mediate?” Surjewala wondered.

The Congress along with other opposition parties last night had demanded that Prime Minister Modi should clarify whether there has been a shift in India’s position of no third party involvement in the Kashmir issue after Trump offered to mediate between India and Pakistan on the matter.

Congress’ chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala had said India has never accepted third party mediation in Jammu and Kashmir.

“To ask a foreign power to mediate in J&K by PM Modi is a sacrilegious betrayal of country’s interests. Let PM answer to the Nation!” he had tweeted.