Lahore: Pakistani cricketer-turned-politician Imran Khan today said that Prime Ministers Narendra Modi and Nawaz Sharif had acted "cowardly" by holding a "secret" meeting at the SAARC summit in Kathmandu last year which was denied by the Pakistan government.
"A leader shows courage. He is not afraid of any one. Nawaz Sharif and Modi held a secret meeting. Leaders do not need to hold meetings in secret. In fact Sharif is afraid of the (Pakistani) establishment and Modi of extremists in India.
That is why they held a meeting in secret," Pakistan Tehreek- i-Insaf chief Khan said adding that by doing so the leaders had acted "cowardly" and lost credibility.
Addressing a press conference, Khan also termed both Sharif and Modi as "vision-less" leaders.
Reacting sharply to Khan's statement, Sharif's spokesman Musaddaq Malik said, "Imran Khan should be ashamed of himself for levelling baseless allegations against Mr Sharif," adding that no such meeting ever took place.
"Modi got a wonderful opportunity to fight poverty but he chose some other path which is unfortunate," Khan said adding leaders sell their vision to their people.
He further said India and Pakistan hold immense potential to benefit from bilateral trade, citing the example of the European Union where the concept of borders is insignificant.
He said the subcontinent is one of the world's poorest regions so the leaders need to re-prioritise their priorities.
"Through improved trade relations between Pakistan and India, and by implementing policies that aim to end poverty and resolve disputes like the Kashmir issue, our leaders can create peace in both countries. Few extremists who resist will always resist and need to be marginalised through public opinion," Khan said.