Debating India

Terrorism after Babri demolition: Mulayam

Thursday 24 August 2006, by KHAN*Atiq

Targeting Muslims and attacking madarsas as centres of "ISI activities" would weaken the country: CM

LUCKNOW: Refuting the Bharatiya Janata Party’s allegations that the Uttar Pradesh Government was soft on terror, Chief Minister Mulayam Singh Yadav said on Wednesday that he was working in tandem with the Central Government to control the menace. He said terrorism was a national problem and a concerted approach was needed to overcome it.

Stating that terrorism was absent till the demolition of the Babri Masjid during the BJP regime in the State, the Chief Minister blamed BJP and RSS for giving birth to the problem.

Replying to a debate in the Assembly on the law and order situation in the State, Mr. Yadav said though he did not believe in fixing blame on any organisation for promoting terror yet those involved in terror acts would not be spared. The Chief Minister said targeting the Muslims and attacking the madarsas as centres of "ISI activities" would only weaken the country.

When the Chief Minister was giving his reply, the BJP benches were vacant as the party MLAs had staged a walkout. The cause of the boycott was the `little time’ allotted by the Speaker, Mata Prasad Pandey, to the BJP members to speak on the issue. Interestingly, the walkout was led by senior BJP MLA and former Speaker Kesari Nath Tripathi with the Leader of the Opposition, Lalji Tandon, following the other members.

Mr. Yadav was quick to seize on the apparent rift in the BJP ranks when he observed that it was perhaps for the first time in the annals of parliamentary practices that the Leader of the Opposition was following his MLAs. He regretted that the BJP had no faith in democratic traditions and parliamentary practices. He stated that the BJP’s action should be censured.

Accusing the BJP of politicising the issue of terrorism, Mr. Yadav said if anybody was soft on terrorism that was the erstwhile BJP-led Central Government (NDA government), the then Prime Minister and the Deputy Prime Minister.

Charging that the BJP did not believe in the Constitution or rule of law, the Chief Minister said the party was not serious about finding a viable solution to the problem.

Taking note of the excerpts from the book, "Fulcrum of Evil: ISI, CIA, Al-Qaeda nexus", which were quoted by Mr. Tandon and Mr. Tripathi, the Chief Minister said the book seemed to have been sponsored by the BJP. Mr. Yadav revealed that he had been alerted by the Army and the intelligence that he was on the terrorists’ "hit list".

He said the BJP would come to know its fate in the next State elections. Initiating the debate, the Leader of the Opposition said that threat of terrorism loomed large over the State and accused the Government of being soft on terror. Mr. Tandon alleged that the Chief Minister was close to the Students Islamic Movement of India (SIMI) and said the entire UP-Nepal border was in the grip of ISI activists.

When Mr Tandon referred to the book written by a former intelligence official which mentioned that 12 MLAs and the Chief Minister of a Central northern State had links with the ISI, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Mohammed Azam Khan rose to ask Mr. Tandon whether the implied reference was to Mr Yadav. On this the Leader of the Opposition denied that he was referring to the UP Chief Minister.

Pramod Tewari of the Congress blamed the BJP for trying to shift the focus by giving a communal colour to the problem of terrorism. He said a strong political will was needed to counter terrorism.

Kesari Nath Tripathi of the BJP held former Prime Ministers Jawaharlal Nehru, Lal Bahadur Shastri and Indira Gandhi responsible for terrorism gaining ground in the country. When the Speaker said that it was the turn of the Chief Minister to speak, Mr. Tripathi staged a walkout and was followed by other members.

See online : The Hindu

SPIP | template | | Site Map | Follow-up of the site's activity RSS 2.0