Home Minister P. Chidambaram Sunday dismissed Lashkar-e-Taiba chief Haafiz Saeed's offer of dialogue and a threat to launch jehad against India, saying New Delhi would be holding talks with the Pakistan government and not the terrorist commander.
Chidambaram was asked how did New Delhi justify its talks offer to Islamabad when Haafiz Saeed was issuing terror threats from Pakistani soil.
"The government of India is not holding talks with Haafiz Saeed. The government of India has proposed talks with Pakistan. What, when, where and how, I don't know," Chidambaram told reporters at the end of an internal security meeting with state chief ministers.
He was asked about an anti-India jehadi rally in Pakistani Kashmir organised Thursday by Lashkar's frontal organisation Jama'at-ud-Daawa. Saeed, in a similar rally in Lahore a day later, had asked Chidambaram "to first hold talks with me".
"Liberate Kashmir. Otherwise the option of jehad is open for us," Saeed said in the Lahore rally.
Chidambaram said the Feb 4 jehadi meeting at Muzaffarabad, which was attended by militant groups including Lashkar and Hizbul Mujahideen, made it "clear that these groups are implacably opposed to India".
"Their weapons are mayhem and violence; and their goal is forcible annexation of Kashmir. Let me make it clear: these dark forces will not succeed in their designs. We will defeat them whenever and wherever we confront them," he said.