12 May, 2021

'I kept My Word, Rajiv Didn't'

Benazir Bhutto refutes National Security Advisor M.K. Narayanan's recent comments questioning her track record as Pakistan PM

'I kept My Word, Rajiv Didn't'

She is known for her charm, and for her instinctive and deft ability to handle the international media. Yet ex-PM Benazir Bhutto, at the other end of a telephone line from Quetta last week, couldn't keep the steel from her voice. "Did you see the interview given by Mr Narayanan," asked a clearly rattled Benazir. "Does India really believe I am not a friend? I thought India regarded me as a factor for peace, as a factor for India-Pakistan stability."

The interview in question was the one National Security Advisor M.K. Narayanan gave to Karan Thapar on a TV news channel. When asked if Benazir would live up to her promises (on handing over terrorists), Narayanan said, "Her track record is not necessarily something which will make us believe that she would follow to the letter of what she has said—I think even if she wishes to do so."

A testy Benazir, calling after a tough day's campaigning in the Balochistan capital Quetta was polite, but would brook no questions. During her call within minutes of the transcript of the interview...

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