NEW DELHI: AS Dulat, the former head of India's external spy agency, today spoke out in defence of the former Pakistani spy chief Asad Durrani who has been barred from leaving his country for their recently-launched book. Mr Dulat said there was no reason why retired Lieutenant General Asad Durrani should face the heat for his opinion when no action was taken against former foreign secretary Riaz Mohammad Khan.
- AS Dulat and Asad Durrani co-authored a book
- Asad Durrani has been barred from leaving Pakistan
- Asad Durrani has been ordered to face an inquiry for the book
Asad Durrani has been ordered to face an inquiry for the book he co-authored with AS Dulat, "The Spy Chronicles: RAW, ISI and the Illusion of Peace".
He has also been placed on Pakistan's exit control list that prevents him from travelling abroad.
Asad Durrani headed the Inter-Services Intelligence, or ISI, from 1990 to 1992. His co-author, AS Dulat, led India's external intelligence agency, Research and Analysis Wing, or RAW, nearly a decade later from 1999 and 2000.
The Pakistan Army hasn't specified which portions of the book it had objected to. A Pakistan army spokesman had earlier described his views expressed in the book as a "violation of Military Code of Conduct applicable on all serving and retired military personnel".
One opinion that is believed to have embarrassed the Pakistani authorities is that they probably knew about the whereabouts of Osama bin Laden and may have collaborated with the United States that carried out the 2011 raid that killed the Al Qaeda chief.
AS Dulat told news agency ANI that there was no information in the book that wasn't already known.
"His views are well-known. There are no new things in the book. This is very unfortunate that such things are being done to Asad Durrani," former RAW chief AS Dulat said. The book is a collection of talks and discussions between the former ISI and RAW chiefs.
"Things written in book are his (Durrani's) memories. Even former Pakistan's Foreign Secretary Riaz Mohammad Khan said that 26/11 Mumbai attacks destroyed Pakistan's credibility in Kashmir. If a former foreign secretary can get away with it, why not ISI chief?" Mr Dulat told ANI.
The controversy comes weeks after former prime minister Nawaz Sharif sparked a similar firestorm at home by suggesting Pakistani terrorists were behind the 2008 attacks in Mumbai.
A meeting of the National Security Committee chaired by Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi had called the ousted prime minister's comments as misleading. Nawaz Sharif has demanded that another meeting of the top security committee be called, this time to discuss Asad Durrani's book.