Thursday Dec 02, 2021
Pakistan has summoned a senior diplomat from the High Commission for the Republic of India to convey the "categorical rejection" of India's response to the recently surfaced incident involving a Pakistani model who posed bareheaded at Gurdwara Darbar Sahib Kartarpur.
A statement issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said that Pakistan "categorically rejects the mischievous spin given by India" to the matter.
It was conveyed to the Indian diplomat that the incident was swiftly addressed and clarified, stating that the "Government of Pakistan accords the highest primacy to the rights of the minorities. Sanctity of religious places and revered sites of every community is ensured in the country."
The statement further stated that the Indian diplomat was told to urge their government to investigate the incidents of gross and systematic persecution of minorities in India which continue with impunity and state complicity, instead of pointing fingers at Pakistan.
"Given its systematic marginalisation and brutalisation of minorities, India has no locus standi to even feign concern for minorities elsewhere."
Pakistan urged the Indian authorities to focus on ensuring effective protection of their own minorities and places of worship from repeated instances of desecration, hate crimes and mob lynching in the country.
On Tuesday, Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) official spokesperson Arindam Bagchi had issued a statement, saying that Pakistan's second senior-most official was summoned to covey "deep concern at the incident of desecration of the sanctity of Gurudwara Shri Darbar Sahib, Kartarpur by a Pakistani model and a clothing brand."
"This reprehensible incident has deeply hurt the sentiments of the Sikh community in India and worldwide. Such continued incidents of desecration and disrespect of places of religious worship of the minority communities in Pakistan highlight the lack of respect for the faith of these communities," The News reported the statement as saying, citing an India-based news agency.
Meanwhile, the clothing brand and the model issued separate apologies over the matter.
The clothing brand responded by deleting the pictures that had sparked outrage from its social media handles.
"The pictures posted on our accounts are NOT part of any shoot done by Mannat Clothing. These pictures were provided to us by a third-party (blogger) in which they were wearing our dress. Please note that Mannat has absolutely NO role in deciding how and where the pictures were taken. However, we accept our mistake that we should not have posted this content and we apologise to every single person who was offended by this. All the holy places are very sacred to us. The pictures and posts have been removed from all our media channels. Again, we apologise wholeheartedly for hurting the public sentiment. Believe us when we say we had no such intention," an Instagram post by the designer said.
"Recently, I posted a picture on Instagram that was not even a part of a shoot or anything. I just went to Kartarpur to learn about the history and know about the Sikh community. It wasn’t done to hurt anyone’s sentiments or anything for that matter,” the Pakistani model was quoted as saying in media reports.
“However, if I have hurt anyone or they think that I don’t respect their culture, I am sorry,” she added.