The inaugural ceremony was graced by the Union Minister of State for External Affairs and Cultures, Meenakshi Lekhi.
Union Minister of State for External Affairs Meenakshi Lekhi has denied signing any document related to declaring Gaza-based Palestinian outfit Hamas a terrorist organisation in India.
Her response came after a picture of a purported document declaring Hamas as a terrorist organisation was shared by journalists and users on social media.
In the purported document, an ‘unstarred’ question was asked by Congress MP K Sudhakaran on Friday whether the Government of India was planning to declare Hamas as a terrorist organisation and if Israel has raised any such demand before it.
The answer attributed to Lekhi read, “Designation of an organisation as terrorist is covered under the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act and declaring any organisation as terrorist is considered as per the provisions of the Act by the relevant government departments.”
When a journalist shared this document on ‘X’ and tagged the minister, she denied signing any paper with the question on Hamas’ declaration of a terrorist organisation in India.
“I have not signed any paper with this question and this answer,” Lekhi said.
However, the official website of the Parliament also carried the document and when Lekhi was quizzed further, she said “an inquiry will find the culprit”.
Israel, India’s all-weather strategic ally, is fighting a war against Hamas in the Gaza strip following the Palestinian militant outfit’s brutal October 7 attack.
India also has strong strategic ties with Arab countries and New Delhi supports “the right of Palestinians to self-determination”. It has adopted a nuanced approach on the ongoing war between Israel and Hamas.
While India has condemned Hamas’ October 7 attack on Israel, it has also asked for adherence to international humanitarian law and restoration of peace.