NEW DELHI (Reuters/AFP) - Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh defended efforts to improve ties with Pakistan on Wednesday in a sign the government is moving towards resuming a stalled peace dialogue with Islamabad despite Opposition pressure. Singh made a spirited defence of a joint statement he signed with his Pakistani counterpart Yousuf Raza Gilani this month agreeing to delink the issue of terrorism from a broader peace process halted by India after Novembers attack on Mumbai. I sincerely believe it is our obligation to keep the channels of communication open (with Pakistan), Singh told Lok Sabha. Unless we talk directly to Pakistan we will have to rely on a third party to do so... Unless you want to go to war with Pakistan, there is no way but to go step by step... Dialogue and engagement are the best way forward. I simply refuse to believe we have broken any national consensus, Singh told parliament, insisting that his government remained adamant that Pakistan must act effectively against terrorism before any resumption of suspended peace talks. However, It is in Pakistans interest and ours to try to make peace, he said. Singh had also drawn flak for agreeing to include in the joint statement a reference to Balochistan, where Pakistan accuses India of fomenting an insurgency. New Delhi denies the charge. But he said India had nothing to hide on Balochistan. The UPA (United Progressive Alliance) government needs no lessons from the Opposition on tackling terrorism, he said to the thumping of desks from ruling party lawmakers. Rejecting Opposition claims, Singh denied that he had made any policy concessions to Gilani. Pakistan must defeat terrorism before being consumed by it and the current leadership understands the need for action, he said. He also argued that his government has done more than a previous BJP-led administration to force Pakistan to act against cross-border militants, and pointed to the information shared by Islamabad on the Mumbai attacks suspects. This is the first time Pakistan has briefed us. It has never happened before, Singh said. At the same time, he reiterated that further steps were expected. We need evidence that action is being taken to outlaw, disarm and shut down the terrorist groups and their front organisations that still operate on Pakistani soil and which continue to pose a great threat to our country, he said. Monitoring Desk adds: Defending the Indo-Pak joint statement, Indian PM Singh said Pakistan did not give any dossier to India on Balochistan when he met Gilani in Egypt on July 16, reported Indian media. No such dossier was given, Manmohan Singh said while intervening in a debate in the parliament on the July 16 India-Pakistan joint statement at Sharm-el-Sheikh that delinked Islamabads action on terror from the composite dialogue process. The contentious statement included a reference to threats to Balochistan, for the first time in a bilateral document between the two countries. I told Gilani we have no interest in destabilising Pakistan and we are not scared of discussing any issue, the PM said. We must ensure that Pakistan acts with credibility and sincerity, Singh said. He also said that Pakistans charges on role of Indian consulate in Afghanistan are false. Manmohan Singh was responding to Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Yashwant Sinhas contention that some Pakistani leaders have seized upon the reference to Balochistan. Sinha alluded to reports in Pakistan that Gilani gave Manmohan Singh a dossier on Indias alleged role in fomenting insurgency in Pakistans southwest province. I categorically say no such dossier was given to me, Singh said. Speaking on the debate, Singh told the House that Pakistan has responded on all points raised by India on the November 26 Mumbai attacks. We have to keep talking with Pakistan as the dialogue is the best way to resolve any deadlock, Singh said. He further said we restrained on condition that Pakistan must act against the terror outfits. The PM also added that the sentence on delinking in statement has been misinterpreted. Singh also said that action on terror cannot depend on resumption of composite dialogue. He said Pakistan has to fulfil its promise first. He further added talks with Pakistan would continue only if no terror attack takes place in India. No talks unless Islamabad acts against terror outfits, he stated. We will spare no expense, no effort to defend the nations sovereignty and integrity, the Prime Minister said. He said he had told his Pakistani counterpart Gilani not to make a distinction between terrorist organisations and that mere rhetoric by Islamabad that it was a victim of terrorism itself does not help. We are not afraid to discuss issues with them. But they must show the same strong and sustained effort against terrorists. We do not dilute our positions and our resolve to defeat terrorism by talking to our neighbours. Pakistan must defeat terrorism before being consumed by it, he said, adding that the impression that talks will continue irrespective of whether it takes action against terror organisations operating against India or not was incorrect. It is the first (time) that they have admitted that their nationals in a terrorist organisation based in Pakistan carried out a ghastly attack in India, Manmohan Singh told the House. He said the admission was made in a dossier given by Pakistan just before he left for his visit to France and Egypt. According to the Indian PM, the dossier established 'beyond doubt that the Lashkar-e-Taiba group backed and financed the operation. We have been told that the investigations are nearly complete. He said India has conveyed its concerns to Pakistan in the strongest terms. We have a policy of zero-tolerance against terror, Singh added. On NPT issue, he made it clear that New Delhi is not going to sign it as countrys nuke deal is a bilateral matter. He also cleared the air on fears of Opposition regarding G8 Summit and nuclear deal. He said there is no provision of unilateral inspection by US in nuclear deal.