India's BJP releases manifesto ahead of upcoming elections

Rahul Gandhi

Imran Khan said that if the next Indian government were led by the opposition Congress party, it might be too scared to seek a settlement with Pakistan over Kashmir, fearing a backlash from the right wing.

Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan speaks at the opening ceremony for the first China International Import Expo (CIIE) in Shanghai, China, November 5, 2018.

Since Modi and the BJP took power in 2014, there has been rising violence against India's minority Muslim population.

"I never thought I would see what is happening in India right now", said the former global cricket star.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi Tuesday held Congress responsible for the creation of Pakistan.

The BJP has made a new pledge to scrap a law that gives special privileges - such as preventing outsiders from buying property - to residents of Indian-occupied Kashmir.

This is despite the polls saying support for the party growing due to tensions with Pakistan.

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Pakistan responded by sending war planes into Indian Kashmir the next day.

Jaitley also cited an Indian airstrike against an alleged terrorist camp in Pakistan after a suicide bomber killed 40 Indian soldiers in disputed Kashmir in February as proof that the incumbents have taken a hard stand against terrorism.

Shiv Sena had been in tandem over supporting the BJP as the former had been criticising the ruling dispensation over its policies but post Pulwama attack, the latter joined in with the BJP and said, that 'it's the nation which comes first and then the petty politics'.

India carried out air strikes in February on a suspected militant camp based in Balakot, Pakistan, who had claimed responsibility for a deadly auto bombing in Kashmir.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is widely expected to retain power after a general election that starts on Thursday, though with a much smaller mandate, hit by concerns over a shortage of jobs and weak farm prices. The remaining constituencies here will vote in the third phase - on April 23.

Imran Khan said that it was vital for Pakistan to have peace with its neighbours, Afghanistan, India and Iran, if it was to have the kind of economy needed to pull 100 million people out of poverty.

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