New Delhi, Jun 14: In a season of repeated snubs to its western neighbour vis-a-vis the vexed issue of sponsorship to terrorism, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday "exchanged usual pleasantries" with his Pakistan counterpart Imran Khan at the Leaders' Lounge at Bishkek in Kyrgyzstan.
This was disclosed by informed sources. Sources said the informal interactions between Mr Modi and Pakistan Prime Minister cannot be termed as 'pull aside' meeting also.
Meanwhile, sources said the Ministry of External Affairs on Friday "registered its strong protest" at Pakistan Government's refusal to grant visa for 'official Jatha' comprising 87 pilgrims on the occasion of Shahidi Jor Mela - Sri Guru Arjan Dev Ji's Martyrdom Day on June 7 under the bilateral Protocol on Visit to Religious Shrines, 1974.
The MEA had earlier requested visas for the pilgrims.
"The Ministry expressed its concern at the disregard shown by the High Commission of Pakistan on the religious sentiments and devotion of the Indian pilgrims especially by Pakistan unilaterally granting restrictive visa (by rail only) to a private group of Indian pilgrims," the source said.
The government of India has also called upon Pakistan to 'immediately grant visa' without any restriction.