Pak officials 'harass' guests at Indian envoy's Iftar party
Another journalist told PTI that he did not attend as he feared about questioning and security checks. He also said there were reports that some invitees were called by anonymous callers and told not to attend the event
Islamabad: Guests invited to Indian High Commission's Iftar party in Islamabad on Saturday evening faced "unprecedented level of harassment" due to enhanced security checks by the Pakistani officials who stopped some invitees. Indian High Commissioner Ajay Bisaria hosted the annual event at Serena Hotel.
Over 300 Pakistani guests, including parliamentarians, government officials, media representatives, retired military officials, businessmen and retired diplomats, were prevented from attending the function, it said.
"Unprecedented level of harassment at @serena_hotels Islamabad. #India embassy iftaar happening & police & anti terrorism force misbehaving with anyone trying into get in the hotel. Got screamed at, my driver abused. Sorry, not being an entitled prick. This was genuine harassment," tweeted journalist Mehreen Zahra-Malik.
Another journalist told PTI that he did not attend as he feared about questioning and security checks. He also said there were reports that some invitees were called by anonymous callers and told not to attend the event.
"Came to Serena for iftar hosted by Indian HC. Hotel seems barricaded. Told that iftar cancelled," he tweeted. Babar said he somehow managed to attend the iftar. High Commissioner Bisaria in his brief address to the audience said some of the guests could not make it to the party.
"We apologise to all our guests who were aggressively turned away from our Iftar party last evening. Such intimidatory tactics are deeply disappointing. They not only violate basic norms of diplomatic conduct and civilised behaviour, but are also counter-productive for our bilateral relations," he said.
The Commission has asked the Pakistani government to "urgently investigate these ugly events".
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