New Delhi: India on Friday attributed the failure of the signing of an agreement with Pakistan on new liberalized visa regime to "some delay in the procedure" in that country and Pakistani Interior Minister's desire for political participation in the exercise.

Foreign Secretary Ranjan Mathai told mediapersons here that India had gone to the Home Secretary-level talks in Islamabad "fully prepared" to sign the visa agreement as per the decision taken during the discussion between Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in April this year.

But "we also have reports that the Pakistani side referred to some delay in its procedure and the Pakistan Interior Minister's (Rehman Malik) desire for political participation" in signing of the visa pact , he said.

"Both sides had attached a lot of importance on signing the visa agreement", he added.

Replying to a question, Mathai said Pakistan had invited Home Minister P Chidambaram who had said that he would visit that country at a convenient time.

In Islamabad, Malik said an agreement on the new liberalised visa regime with India will not be inked during the ongoing Home Secretary-level talks here, suggesting that the pact should be concluded at the political level.

Rehman Malik made these remarks after meeting the Indian delegation led by Home Secretary R K Singh who is in Islamabad for talks with Pakistan's Interior Secretary Khwaja Siddique Akbar.


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