The Pathankot terror attack sparked a fresh round of political slugfest with Congress questioning the Modi government’s handling of Pakistan affairs and BJP hitting back, accusing it of trying to “politicise” the incident while ally Shiv Sena sought a befitting response.

Targeting the government, Congress said the attack came a week after Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited Lahore to meet his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif and this showed that ISI continues to sustain and support terror activities against India.

The opposition party also reminded Modi of his promise to assertively handle ties with the neighbouring country.

Congress has accused the Modi government of flip-flops in its Pakistan policy. While on the one hand the government has asserted that terror and talks cannot go together, on the other Modi has met Sharif and preparations are underway for resumption of comprehensive dialogue, the opposition party said.

“It’s indeed a very serious matter as seven days after Modi visited Pakistan to meet Nawaz Sharif, a terrorist module comes from Pakistan and attacks in Punjab and attacks our frontline security installation. Two things are very clear. First, despite the PM’s visit, ISI continues to sustain and support terror activities against India.

“Secondly the terror camps run by terrorists in POK for carrying on anti-India activity continues to be supported by Pakistani establishments. It raises security concerns for Punjab as the state is witnessing a sudden surge in such activities after being peaceful for the last 20 years,” Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala told reporters here.

Hitting back, Union Minister and BJP leader Prakash Javadekar said it was “condemnable” that Congress was “politicising” the terror attack.

“While the whole country is standing with our brave soldiers, Congress is singing a different tune. It is trying to politicise the issue. It is unfortunate and we condemn it,” he said.

BJP reacted cautiously on the attack’s possible impact on the Indo-Pak talks, saying “a right decision will be taken at the right time”.

“We congratulate our armed forces that they were able to thwart it with their wisdom and valour. India is capable of giving a befitting reply to any terror attack,” BJP secretary and media department head Shrikant Sharma said.

Home Minister Rajnath Singh said India wanted good relations with the neighbouring country but if there is any terror attack on India, a befitting reply will be given.

Taking a swipe at the government, Sena said the public is waiting for a response in the similar language and wondered “where is that language, that action?”

Party leader Sanjay Raut said, “If our Air base is attacked by terrorists from Pakistan, the responsibility is with Pakistan, but they (terrorists) get shelter there, they get support from across the border…”

Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah said the attack on the air base was the first major challenge to Modi’s Pakistan plan and that BJP will have to move beyond its stand on talks and terror to insulate the dialogue process.

CPI urged both India and Pakistan not to fall into the “trap of provocation” by terror outfits by derailing peace talks between them due to the attack which it condemned.

In a pre-dawn attack, a group of suspected Pakistani terrorists struck at an Air Force base in Punjab, leading to a fierce gunbattle in which three security personnel were killed four attackers gunned down. Courtesy: PTI

Author: sarkarimirror