Suffered ‘no damage’ in balakot strikes, will facilitate visit of Indian journalists to ‘see the truth’: Pakistan

The Pakistan Army Spokesperson Major General Asif Ghafoor has said that there was “no damage” in the Balakot air strike carried out by India and asserted that it will facilitate the Indian journalists if they wish to visit the area to “see the truth”.

Ghafoor alleged that India had been “lying repeatedly” and Pakistan has not responded to those lies.

“Since the last two months India has been continuing to lie. As a responsible country we have not responded to their lies,” he said.

“The truth is that there was an incident in Pulwama. Attacks on the police in Pulwama have happened before. There was no damage at our end in Balakot. We took local and foreign media there to show them [the truth]. We will facilitate Indian media if they choose to come to Balakot to see the truth,” Ghafoor said.

He added that as a part of a determined campaign combat terrorism, Pakistan will bring over over 30,000 madrassas into the mainstream education system.

Addressing a press conference in Rawalpindi, Ghafoor said Pakistan had witnessed a surge in religious seminaries from 247 madrassas in 1947 to 2,861 in 1980.

“And now there are over 30,000 madrassas. Out of these, only 100 are involved in propagating terrorism,” he said, adding that several steps were afoot to control and bring the seminaries into the mainstream.

“All madrassas will be brought under the Ministry of Education so that contemporary subjects can be taught. We will formulate a syllabus which will not have hate speech and students will be taught respect for different sects,” he said.

The military spokesman said the students will also receive a degree which will be associated with the education board.

“In February, money was allotted to bring the seminaries into the mainstream. To control the welfare activities of proscribed organisations, the government has made a system to mainstream their social activities,”

Ghafoor said to bring the madrassas into the mainstream, they will have to start teaching other subjects so that students have skills other than religious studies.

He said initially Rs 2 billion will be required to run this programme and then Rs 1 billion each year to keep it going.

“We will provide these funds so that these madrassas are mainstreamed and all of our children have equal opportunities,” he said.


Click to comment
To Top