PM asks Zardari to pray for peace at Ajmer: Sushma Swaraj

   Apr 8, 5:28 pm

New Delhi, Apr 8 (ANI): Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha, Sushma Swaraj, who was one of the dignitaries present at the Indian Prime Minister luncheon meeting hosted in honour of the visiting Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari, has tweeted that Dr. Manmohan Singh asked Zardari to pray for peace between the two nations at the holy shrine of Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti in Ajmer.

"Attended lunch hosted by the Prime Minister for President Zardari and his team. Pakistan's Interior Minister Mr Rehman Malik and Mr Bilawal Bhutto were also present," tweeted Swaraj.

"Towards the end of lunch, Prime Minister told President Zardari that since he was going to Ajmer sharief, he should pray before Khwaja sahib for peace in both our countries. President Zardari promised to do that," she adds in her tweet.

Zardari met Dr. Singh during his three-hour stopover in Delhi before flying to Ajmer to pay obeisance at the shrine of Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti.

Senior UPA Ministers, including Pranab Mukherjee, A K Antony, S M Krishna and P Chidambaram, along with Congress General Secretary Rahul Gandhi were present during the luncheon meeting.

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) veteran Lal Krishna Advani was also present at Manmohan Singh's residence for today's meeting.

Zardari has now arrived in Ajmer amidst tight security to offer prayers at Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti's dargah.

Zardari, his son Bilawal and the Pakistan delegation, reached Ajmer around 4:20 p.m. in three Indian Air Force helicopters to offer prayers at the famous Sufi shrine.

Zardari landed at Googhra helipad, which is 12 km away from Ajmer and traveled in a bulletproof car to the Sufi shrine. His cavalcade comprised of nearly 20 vehicles.

The district administration has asked residents, whose houses face the dargah to keep their windows shut during Zardari's visit and all the shops dealing with pilgrimage items situated in the lane leading to the shrine have been closed between 1.30 p.m. and 6 p.m.

Devotees have also been barred from visiting the shrine from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.

Around 3,000 policemen have been deployed around the shrine and 80 police personnel have been stationed inside the dargah.

Zardari, 56, will be at the shrine of Khwaja Moinuddin Chishti for nearly an hour before flying back to Pakistan.

India and Pakistan, which have fought three wars since their independence from British rule in 1947, have been slowly trying to repair relations and agreed to resume formal peace talks broken off in the wake of the Mumbai attack in 2008. (ANI)

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