Navjot Singh Sidhu Insists On Dialogue With Pakistan

PUNJAB

Punjab minister Navjot Singh Sidhu today insisted that dialogue and diplomatic pressure will count for in seeking a long-term solution to terror outfits operating across the border, amid strain in India-Pakistan ties in the aftermath of the Pulwama terror attack and subsequent developments.

“I stand by my conviction that dialogue and diplomatic pressure will count for a great deal in seeking a long-term solution to the presence and practice of terror outfits that operate within and across the border,” the cricketer-turned-politician said in a two-page statement titled “We have a choice”, he said.

“The solution to terror is peace, development and progress and not unemployment, hatred and fear,” he said.

The Congress leader’s statement came a day after his friend and Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan talked peace and invited India for a dialogue amid escalations across the border.

“I stand by my country. I am the son of a freedom fighter, and the true test of my patriotism is courage. I stand against the fear that keeps many of us silent,” he said.

Today Sidhu said “no son of our soil should be separated from his loved ones as fighter pilot Abhinandan is today.”

An IAF pilot was captured by Pakistan after an air combat yesterday during which the two sides said they shot down each other’s warplanes that followed an unsuccessful attempt to target Indian military installations in retaliatory strikes that sparked fears of war.