As tension over mutilation of soldiers rises, India sends back 50 Pakistani students
Around 50 Pakistani students, visiting India at the invitation of an NGO, were today sent back after the Indian government advised it against hosting them at a time which was not "appropriate" in the aftermath of rising tension over the beheading of two Indian security personnel by the Pakistan Army.
"An NGO had invited Pakistani school students here. They came to India on the same day when the barbaric and inhuman act of killing and mutilating our soldiers happened,” Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Gopal Baglay said.
"The ministry advised the NGO that it was not an appropriate time for such exchanges after we learnt that the children had crossed over to India on May 1," Baglay said.
Routes2Roots, a Delhi-based NGO, had invited 50 students from Pakistan as part of their Student 'Exchange for Change' Program.
The students from Pakistan were scheduled to go on a day-long trip to Agra today and participate in an exchange of experiences with Indian students tomorrow at the Pakistan Embassy here.
Expressing regret over the return of the delegation, Routes2Roots said that the trip had to be shortened and the students and teachers have been sent back to Lahore.
"Around 50 students aged between 11-15 years old from Pakistan along with their teachers arrived in Delhi on May 1 and were supposed to meet their Indian pen friends and hosts of other programs which had to be cut short.
"Keeping in view the security and sentiments of fellow Indians the delegation has been sent back to Lahore safely," Rakesh Gupta and Tina Vachani, founders of Routes2Roots, said in a statement.
Meanwhile, India today summoned Pakistani envoy Abdul Basit and asked him to take ‘immediate action against its soldiers and commanders responsible for the heinous act’.
(With PTI inputs)