News WrapGet Handpicked Stories from our editors directly to your mailbox

Imran Khan criticises state of minorities in India; New Delhi calls his comments 'egregious insult to all citizens' 

File photo: Pakistan's Prime Minister Imran Khan. Photograph:( AFP )

WION New Delhi, Delhi, India Feb 09, 2019, 10.21 PM (IST) Written By: Sidhant Sibal

India has slammed Pakistan's Prime Minister Imran Khan for his comments on the situation of minorities in India, calling his remarks an "egregious insult to all citizens of India".

Raveesh Kumar, Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson, said, "Pakistan’s Prime Minister has yet again demonstrated his lack of understanding about India’s secular polity and ethos. He overlooks the obvious fact that adherents of all faiths choose to live under the democratic polity and the progressive Constitution of India."

"India has eminent leaders of all faiths who occupy its highest Constitutional and official positions," Kumar added. 

Pak prime minister Imran Khan was in Nankana Sahib on Saturday where he said, unlike India, his country doesn't treat its minorities as second class citizens.

India also highlighted the incident of the removal of Princeton University economist Atif Mian from Imran Khan-led Economic Advisory Council (EAC) owing to his minority Ahmadiyya background.

MEA said, "Pakistani citizens of non-Islamic faith are barred from occupying high Constitutional offices. The minorities are often turned away from government bodies like the Economic Advisory Council of their Prime Minister, even in ‘naya Pakistan'."

India said Pakistan "would do well to focus on its domestic challenges" and "improve conditions of its citizens rather than try and divert attention".

Pakistan has been trying to get a bailout from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to support its ailing economy. Imran Khan will be meeting IMF chief Christine Lagarde on Sunday in Dubai for the same. 

This is not the first time when Khan has raked the topic of minorities in India. In December, he said he will "show Modi government how to treat minorities".

On December 25, 2018, on the occasion of the birth anniversary of Muhammad Ali Jinnah, Khan tweeted, "Naya Pakistan is Quaid’s Pakistan and will ensure that our minorities are treated as equal citizens, unlike what is happening in India".