India on Thursday rejected Pakistan’s allegation that New Delhi orchestrated the bomb blast near Jamaat-ud-Dawa chief Hafiz Saeed’s home in Lahore on June 23, reported the Hindustan Times. The Ministry of External Affairs called Islamabad’s accusation “baseless propaganda”.
“Pakistan would do well to expend the same effort in setting its own house in order and taking credible and verifiable action against terrorism emanating from its soil and terrorists who have found safe sanctuaries there,” MEA spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said at a weekly media briefing
Bagchi added that the international community was aware of Pakistan’s history with terrorism. “This is acknowledged by none other than its own leadership, which continues to glorify terrorists like Osama bin Laden as martyrs,” he added.
Three people were killed and more than 20 were injured in the car bomb blast on June 23. The explosion took place near Saeed’s home at Johar Town in Lahore. No group has claimed responsibility for the attack so far.
Saeed, the mastermind behind the 26/11 Mumbai attacks, is currently lodged at Lahore’s Kot Lakhpat jail.
On July 4, Pakistan’s National Security Advisor Moeed Yusuf had told reporters in Islamabad that the mastermind of the attack “is an Indian citizen and he is associated with R&AW [Research and Analysis Wing]”.
On Twitter, Prime Minister Imran Khan had alleged that the “planning & financing of this heinous terror attack has links to Indian sponsorship of terrorism against Pakistan”. He had asked the global community to “mobilise international institutions against this rogue behaviour”.
The controversy about the Lahore explosion comes amidst rising tension between India and Pakistan over suspected drone attacks. Last week, the Ministry of External Affairs confirmed reports that a drone had been spotted over the premises of the Indian High Commission in Islamabad on June 26.
The security breach at the Indian High Commission took place a day before two blasts at an airbase in Jammu. Two Indian Air Force personnel were injured in the incident. The police suspect that drones were used to drop explosive material, but the Indian Air Force has not confirmed this.