December 2001 News

Enact anti-terror law, destroy terrorist camps in PoK: BJP

14 December 2001
The Indian Express

New Delhi: A day after the terror attack on Parliament, the BJP on Friday emphasised on the need for enacting the anti-terrorism law, following the policy of hot pursuit of terrorists and destroying terrorist training camps in Pakistan occupied Kashmir (PoK). ''We should take a decision as early as possible on a pro-active policy against terrorists. There is also need for hot pursuit of terrorists and destroying of PoK terrorist training camps,'' party spokesman V.K. Malhotra told reporters after a group of BJP MPs met Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee. They said government should adopt the stand similar to the one taken by the US in Afghanistan following the September 11 attacks, he said. ''The party is of the view that POTO should get Parliamentary approval and if the Opposition stalls Parliament on the issue, the government should re-promulgate the ordinance,'' he said. Malhotra said the government must ensure passage of the anti-terrorism Bill which was needed in view of the prevailing circumstances. Malhotra said Home Minister L.K. Advani will make a statement in Parliament on December 18 on Thursday’s attack and a detailed discussion would follow. On the role the party saw for the US in the wake of the attack, Malhotra said: ''The US should support India''s fight against terrorism. Otherwise they will be seen adopting different standards on terrorism.'' He hit out at the Congress for describing the terrorist attack as a ''monumental security lapse''. ''It shows the attitude of the Congress when the entire nation is fighting the menace of terrorism. It is wrong on the part of the Congress to talk in such a tone,'' he said. The PM however later reacted to this by saying that the government needed more time to decide its policy. ''I can''t answer this question now,'' he told reporters. He also suggested that India was not viewing Thursday''s attack as an ''act of war'', as the US had done with the September 11 attack. Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pramod Mahajan also declined to comment on the possibility of adopting a ''hot pursuit'' policy, though he made clear references to the possibility that the attack could have been carried out by Pakistan-sponsored terrorists. ''All of us know that terrorism in this country is sponsored by our neighbour,'' Mahajan said


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