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India lodges strong protest with Pakistan on harassment of diplomats

As a result of such harassment they were compelled to return to Islamabad without performing their diplomatic and consular duties vis-a-vis Indian pilgrims.

, ET Bureau|
Updated: Nov 23, 2018, 08.55 PM IST
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This is the third consecutive visit of the Indian Sikh pilgrims when Pakistan has prevented the Indian High Commission officials from meeting the visiting Indian national.
NEW DELHI: India on Friday lodged a strong protest with Pakistan that despite having been granted prior travel permission by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Pakistan, the Consular officials of the High Commission of India in Islamabad were harrased and denied access on November 21 and 22 at Gurudwara Nankana Sahib and Gurudwara Sacha Sauda to the Indian pilgrims visiting Pakistan under the Bilateral Protocol.

As a result of such harassment they were compelled to return to Islamabad without performing their diplomatic and consular duties vis-a-vis Indian pilgrims.

"We have shared our grave concern that this is the third consecutive visit of the Indian Sikh pilgrims when Pakistan has prevented the Indian High Commission officials from meeting the visiting Indian nationals on the pretext of security in order to deflect attention from Pakistan’s violation of the international legal instruments and conventions like the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, 1961 and the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations, 1963. This is also in breach of the letter and spirit of the 1974 Bilateral Protocol on visit to religious shrines and the Code of Conduct for the treatment of diplomatic/consular personnel in India and Pakistan, 1992. Pakistan has been reminded that this is in contrast to the treatment met out to their High Commissioner and the Consular officials in New Delhi who have been provided full access to meet the Pakistani pilgrims who are currently in India on pilgrimage to Kalyar Sharif," MEA said in a statement m.

"We have also expressed grave concern at the reports of attempts being made during the ongoing visit of the Indian pilgrims to Pakistan, to incite communal disharmony and intolerance and promote secessionist tendencies with the objective of undermining India’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. Pakistan has been called upon to take all measures to not allow its territory to be used for any hostile propaganda and support for secessionist tendencies against India in keeping with the commitments made under the Simla Agreement, 1972 and endorsed in the Lahore Declaration, 1999," pointed out a MEA statement.

"Pakistan has been remined that such actions are not in consonance with the stated intentions of Pakistan to facilitate the visits of Indian Sikh pilgrims, espeially as we commemorate the 550th Birth Anniversary of Guru Nanak Devji," the statement noted.

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