India on Sunday protested to Pakistan against gross intimidation of guests invited for an Iftar event and have requested the Pakistani government to urgently investigate the events and share the results of the exercise with the Indian High Commission.
The Indian High Commission’s Iftar party in Islamabad on June 1 didn’t end well for some guests as they faced “unprecedented level of harassment” due to enhanced security checks by the Pakistani officials.
The guests attending the event said that additional security deployment was made around the luxury hotel.
A journalist said he did not attend as he feared about questioning and security checks. He also said that there were reports that some invitees were called by anonymous callers and told not to attend the Iftar Party.
Unprecedented level of harassment at @serena_hotels Islamabad. #India embassy iftaar happening & police & anti terrorism force misbehaving with anyone trying into get in the hotel. Got screamed at, my driver abused. Sorry, not being an entitled prick. This was genuine harassment— Mehreen Zahra-Malik (@mehreenzahra) June 1, 2019Advertisement
However, another journalist said he saw more than usual security presence but those having invitation cards and identity documents were allowed to attend.
“My invitation card was checked and I was asked questions about profession and residence and allowed to go in,” he said.
Senior Pakistan People’s Party leader Farhatullah Babar said that every stare deflected towards odd visitors in hotel’s lobby.
“Came to Serena for iftar hosted by Indian HC. Hotel seems barricaded. Told that iftar cancelled. When insisted, I was told to use other gate. Other gate also closed and told to go back to front gate again. What’s going on, something fishy,” he tweeted.
Indian High Commissionerin Pakistan Ajay Bisaria said that some of the guests were not able to attend the party.
“I want to apologize because some of you faced a lot of trouble to come here and some of our friends could not come,” said Bisaria.
Tension flared up between the two asian nations after a suicide bomber of Pakistan-based militant group Jaish-e-Muhammed killed 40 CRPF personnel in Kashmir’s Pulwama district on February 14.
Amid mounting outrage, the Indian Air Force (IAF) carried out a counter-terror operation, hitting the biggest JeM training camp in Balakot, deep inside Pakistan on February 26.
The next day, Pakistan Air Force retaliated and downed a MiG-21 in aerial combat and captured an IAF pilot, who was handed over to India.