Hindu Group Assails Indian PM for Gilani Comments

Posted November 11th, 2011 at 3:55 pm (UTC-5)
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An apparent thaw in relations between India and Pakistan is leading to condemnation from at least one radical Hindu group.

The leader of India-based Vishwa Hindu Parishad lashed out at Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh Friday, blasting Mr. Singh for calling Pakistani Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani a “man of peace.”

In a sarcastic comment to reporters in Hyderabad, India, Vishwa Hindu Parishad Secretary General Praveen Togaida said Mr. Singh's remarks sounded like those of someone trying to become prime minister of Pakistan.

But the promise of a “new chapter” in Indian-Pakistani relations did draw praise from the disputed Kashmir region.

Separatist leader Mirwaiz Umar Farooq praised the talks between India and Pakistan. The chairman of the Hurriyat Conference also said the time had come to eradicate the distrust between the long-time rivals.

Muslim separatists have been fighting for Kashmir's independence from Hindu-majority India or a merger with Muslim-majority Pakistan. Thousands have been killed in the insurgency.

Kashmir is divided between India and Pakistan and claimed in full by both.