Daughters belong to all: Sushma Swaraj to Pakistani girl

HT Correspondent, New Delhi: External affairs minister Sushma Swaraj has responded to a tweet of a Pakistani

girl, who was in India to attend a peace festival, that she was “concerned about her well-being” amid heightened tensions between India and Pakistan.The minister addressed Aliya Harir, a young peace activist from Pakistan, who had tweeted on Saturday she was extremely overwhelmed after speaking to Swaraj who assured that they will reach home safely.Swaraj tweeted on Monday, a day after the Pakistani delegation left India.
Harir, who runs a cross-border peace initiative Aghaz-e-Dosti, led a group of 18 girls from Pakistan to take part in the Global Youth Peace Festivals that was organised by a Chandigarh-based NGO Yuvsatta.
The girls, who came to Chandigarh last Wednesday for the five-day event, decided to stay back in India despite their parents’ concern after the September 29 “surgical strikes” by the Indian Army across the Line of Control (LoC).Security of the Pakistani contingent was strengthened after the strike and sources said intelligence sleuths kept a close watch over the guests.
Indian soldiers had struck militants who were planning to infiltrate into India from Pakistan-Occupied Kashmir. The lightning strikes were in response to an attack on an army base in Uri in northern Kashmir that left 19 soldiers dead.
Islamabad has repeatedly called India’s claim of destroying seven “terror launchpads” a “fabricated lie”. The two countries are locked in a war of words over the matter.