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Six days later: Finally, Pakistan’s Sharif Brothers congratulate PM Modi!

Six days later: Finally, Pakistan’s Sharif Brothers congratulate PM Modi!

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Virendra Pandit

New Delhi: India’s distant neighbor, Pakistan, finally caught up with the world and, six days after the Lok Sabha elections results came, congratulated Prime Minister Narendra Modi on his third consecutive term that commenced with the swearing-in of his Council of Ministers on Sunday.

Of late, Pakistan, whose economy is in a dire strait, is trying to reopen the trade channels with India through Track-II diplomacy by refraining from reacting strongly against New Delhi.

Former Pakistan Prime Minister and the ruling PML (N) chief Mohammed Nawaz Sharif, who was among the foreign guests attending PM Modi’s first swearing-in in 2014, wished the Indian leader on his third term: “Let us replace hate with hope,” he urged.

He noted that the Lok Sabha election mandate reflected the confidence of the people in PM Modi’s leadership.

“My warm felicitations to Modi Ji on assuming office for the third time. Your party’s success in recent elections reflects the confidence of the people in your leadership. Let us replace hate with hope and seize the opportunity to shape the destiny of the two billion people of South Asia,” he wrote on X, formerly Twitter.

Earlier on Monday, Nawaz’s younger brother and Pakistan PM Shehbaz Sharif also felicitated PM Modi in a brief message. Taking to X, he said, “Felicitations to Narendra Modi on taking oath as the Prime Minister of India.”

PM Sharif’s “felicitations” came a week after Pakistan Foreign Office spokesperson Mumtaz Zahra Baloch, said in an official statement that it would be “premature” for the country to congratulate PM Modi.

Responding to Shehbaz’s message, PM Modi thanked him for the “good wishes.”

Unlike other key figures from India’s neighboring countries and the Indian Ocean region, PM Shehbaz was not invited to Modi’s swearing-in event.

The foreign dignitaries attending the event included Maldives President Mohamed Muizzu, Nepal Prime Minister Pushpa Kamal Dahal “Prachand”, Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, and Sri Lankan President Ranil Wickremesinghe.

The exclusion of Shehbaz Sharif from the invitation list reflected the ongoing diplomatic tension between the two countries.
PM Modi later interacted with the foreign leaders at the banquet hosted by President Droupadi Murmu.


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