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BJP blasts UPA for laxity in security

BJP blasts UPA for laxity in security

Author: TNN
Publication: The Times of India
Date: August 7, 2008

Introduction: Says National Backlash Building Up Against Govt On Amarnath, Terror Issues

Turning the heat on the Manmohan Singh government over its "slack" approach to internal security, the BJP on Wednesday said a "nationalist" backlash was building up against the UPA for its poor handling of issues like the Amarnath land transfer case and the ban on SIMI.

The two cases highlighted the government's inability to stand up to separatists while also not being able to act firmly against terror outfits, the BJP said. "The support extended by Lalu Prasad and Mulayam Singh to the ban on SIMI being lifted (by the tribunal) has led to the question being asked whether India is safe under the UPA," BJP general secretary Arun Jaitley said. The BJP sought to pin down the government by arguing that the Amarnath controversy showed how far the Congress could go in appeasing separatists in the Kashmir Valley. "The upsurge in Jammu is a reaction and a retaliation for being treated like a colony. The government will have to address the grievances of the agitationists which centre round the cancellation of land for pilgrims in the face of protests by separatists," Jaitley said. With the BJP looking to regain the ground it had lost to the Congress in the last elections in Jammu, the saffron party zeroed in on the UPA lead player's unenviable situation of being caught between a rock and a hard place.

By taking up the SIMI ban along with the Amarnath issue, the BJP suggested that bowing before Kashmir separatists and failure to present a decent case on SIMI both reflected the Congress's urge to cater to minority votebanks. Demanding home minister Shivraj Patil's resignation, the BJP accused the government of failing to present the relevant material on SIMI before the tribunal. It said despite SIMI's open advocacy of radical fundamentalism which rejected democracy and a complete intolerance of other faiths and the complicity of its members in terrorist cases, the government had made a hash of the case. SIMI's ideological links with Taliban and Al Qaida and its collaboration with groups like HuJI and Lashkar were well known and the government's casual approach would only encourage the extremist organisation. The home ministry has failed to take note of the blasts in Malegaon, the Mumbai train attacks, the Hyderabad bombings and recent blasts at Jaipur, Bangalore and Ahmedabad, the BJP said.

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