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NE exodus: Pakistan denies hand, demands proof

world Updated: Aug 20, 2012 07:42 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times

A day after the government said the bulk SMSes and MMSes that triggered panic among the northeastern people had been traced to Pakistan, home minister Sushilkumar Shinde asked Islamabad to crack down on elements fanning communal tension in the country.

In a telephonic conversation on Sunday with Pakistan interior minister Rehman Malik, who had called to exchange greetings on the eve of Id, Shinde expressed concern over the use of social media websites to cause strife in India and sought Pakistan’s cooperation in checking such elements.

Malik, however, told Shinde that India should share evidence.

"Shinde raised the issue of morphed online images with me. No bulk SMSes on Assam violence have originated from Pakistan," Malik told Indian news channels.

"I have told Shinde that Pakistan came to know of the Assam issue only from the media. I promised him all cooperation from our side if India could provide evidence," Malik said.

The government, meanwhile, is learnt to have ordered the blocking of 80 more internet pages and user accounts on Facebook and Twitter to stop rumour-mongering. It had blocked 76 internet sites on Saturday.

According to a home ministry report, a Pakistan-based group is suspected to have doctored images to depict them as victims of the Assam violence and released them through the social media.

Malik is said to have reiterated to Shinde his commitment to bring the perpetrators of the 26/11 attacks to justice and invited the home minister to Pakistan to sign the revised liberalised visa agreement, which has been agreed to by both sides.

"Both leaders agreed to continue mutual cooperation and work towards rooting out terrorism in all forms," a home ministry spokesperson said.