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PM must visit Pak for better ties: Malik

New Delhi: Pakistani Interior Minister Rehman Malik on Saturday said that if Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh does not visit his country, the people will be disappointed.

Malik, who met Manmohan Singh on Saturday and reminded him of the long-standing invitation to visit Pakistan, said people in Manmohan Singh's native Chakwal district in what is now Paksitani Punjab were eager to meet him. He said the Indian Prime Minister enjoyed respect globally.

"If he (Manmohan Singh) does not come, people will be disappointed," Malik said. Manmohan Singh was born in Gah village in Chakwal in Punjab, now a part of Pakistan.

Malik, who arrived Friday on a three-day visit to the country, said he explained to the Prime Minister the steps taken to bring to book those involved in the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks.

Sources in the Prime Minister's Office described the meeting as "a courtesy call" and said it was very short.

They said Manmohan Singh thanked Malik for extending him the invitation of Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari to visit his country.

They said a substantial part of Malik's visit to India was aimed at meeting Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde and operationalising the liberalised visa agreement.

Malik, who met Shinde on Friday and National Security Advisor Shiv Shankar Menon Saturday, said he had good meetings with both the Indian leaders.

"Overall, very good meetings, very effective message...Whatever trust deficit was there, it was removed," he said. He credited both Zardari and Manmohan Singh for giving a push to boost people-to-people ties between two countries.

(Agencies)

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