National security never on agenda of NAC: Jaitley

Last Updated: Friday, July 15, 2011 - 22:34

New Delhi: BJP on Friday alleged that national
security was never on the agenda of Sonia Gandhi-led National
Advisory Council and demanded a strong anti-terror policy to
deal firmly with Pakistan.

"These repeated attacks on Mumbai must necessarily
convince the whole of India that we need a system ranging from
intelligence, prevention and punishment where it is not
possible to attack any place in India," Leader of the
Opposition in Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley said in an article
posted on the BJP website.

He said, "Has national security ever been on the agenda
of those who claim to be the repositories of the Civil Society
or the National Advisory Council? The spirit of Mumbai must
lead to a national resolve that all steps, political,

administrative and security related must be taken to eliminate
terror."

He demanded that a firm policy towards Pakistan, which
has he said has allegedly been sponsoring terrorism against
India, was the need of the hour.

"India lives with a traumatic neighbourhood... Our
neighbour on the western border has used terrorism as an
instrument of state policy. There is hardly a major global
terror attack where a Pakistani connection is not discovered.
Pakistan has been correctly described as an epicenter of
global terror," Jaitley said.

Jaitley said that Kasab`s trial as well as the Chicago
trial (of LeT operative David Coleman Headley and Tahawwur
Rana) had given enough evidence that organisations like LeT,
JuD and Indian Mujahideen were sponsored by Pakistan.

"Those who favour engagement with Pakistan must
necessarily remember that Pakistan today is in a turmoil. It
is ostensibly a part of the war against terror. It is also in
alliance with those who perpetuate terror," Jaitley said.

He maintained that unless Pakistan decides to become
"less radical, more transparent, more democratic" and a nation
de-linking itself from terror, the success of any engagement
with it would be doubtful.

The senior BJP leader said the January, 2004 agreement
between India and Pakistan, which said the latter would not
allow its soil to be used for sponsoring terror against India,
should be the basis of our policy towards our neighbour.

Jaitley strongly criticised the UPA government for not
taking appropriate measures like passing a strong anti-terror
law on the lines of TADA and POTA, and putting a stop to
votebank politics.

"TADA was brought in by Rajiv Gandhi to investigate
terror acts and punish the terrorists.... When it was
correctly used against the terrorists responsible for the 1993
serial blasts in Mumbai, a campaign for its repeal was
launched and TADA was repealed. POTA was repealed on the
ground that we did not need a special law against terror,"
he said.

He alleged that Congress leaders were playing vote bank
politics by questioning the Batla House encounter and visiting
homes of IM suspects in Azamgarh.

"It is vote bank and vote bank politics alone which is
responsible for delaying punitive action against the
conspirator in the Parliament attack. The National Counter
Terrorism Centre promised to be created by September 2009
has still not been created," Jaitley said.

PTI



First Published: Friday, July 15, 2011 - 22:34

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