MUJIB WARNS VESTED INTERESTS

BHUTTO EXPLAINS LEGAL POSITION

 

Statements by Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and Mr. Z. A. Bhutto on February 3, 1971,
reacting to the blowing up of the hijacked Indian plane at Lahore.

 

Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the Chief of the Awami League, has called upon the Government to hold an inquiry into the blowing up of the hijacked Indian plane at Lahore and " to take effective measures to prevent interested quarters from exploiting­the situation for their nefarious end".

 

Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, in a statement issued in Dacca on Wednesday said that he was surprised to hear that the hijacked Indian plane has been blown up, adding that the incident must be deplored.

 

The Awami League Chief urged the people to be alert against the vested interests and to resist their attempts to exploit the incident to create abnormal conditions to sabotage the peaceful transfer of power to the people.

 

Sheikh Mujibur Rahman said " I was surprised to hear that the hijacked Indian plane at Lahore has been blown up. While the hijacking was a 'fait accompli', its subsequent blowing up must be deplored ".

 

He said : " Prompt and effective steps by the authorities could have been taken to prevent its occurrence. It should have been realized that at this critical juncture in the nation's life, the creation of abnormal conditions can only serve the interests of saboteurs and conspirators against the people."

 

The Awami League Chief said: " The people should be fully alert to resist all attempts by the vested interests to exploit this occurrence in order to create abnormal conditions with the ulterior purpose of sabotaging the peaceful transfer of power to the people."

 

He said: " I would urge the Government to hold an inquiry into this matter,, and to take effective measures to prevent interested quarters from exploiting this situation for their nefarious ends."

 

Bhutto explains legal position

 

Mr. Z. A. Bhutto, Chairman of the Pakistan People's Party, said here on Wednesday that the people and Government of Pakistan were not responsible for the destruction of the Indian plane, hijacked by two youug commandos on Saturday.

 

He was talking to PPI at the Lahore airport before flying to Karachi.

 

Mr. Bhutto said as for the legal aspect, the Indian plane was within our jurisdiction and it would have been disastrous if a Pakistan national had blown it.

 

But the plane was blown up by two young Kashmiri freedom fighters who were wagging a struggle against the Indian imperialism for the liberation of their home-land and as such the people and the Government of Pakistan were not responsible for its destruction.

 

The Chairman of the Pakistan People's Party further said the question of granting asylum to the two Kashmiris simply did not arise because they were not Indian nationals.

 

They have a right to stay in Pakistan

 

" As Kashmiris they have a right to stay in Pakistan," he said and added, "` We are happy that these two brave youngmen will be with us".

 

Mr. Bhutto disclosed that he had asked his party leaders in Lahore to -establish contact with the Jammu and Kashmiri National Liberation Front and " assist them in whatever manner they want."

 

When asked what sort of assistance did the PPP want to extend to the NLF, he said he had explained this to the party leaders of Lahore. When further asked did the assistance include helping the NLF in organisational matters, he said, " you can talk to the party men."

 

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(PAKISTAN OBSERVER-February 6, 1971)