|N A T I O N|
Operations to go on:
BJP decries Cong, CPI, CPM remarks
Delhi-Lahore bus: increase
Badal challenges Sonia to debate
Pak known for its perfidy: Thakre
Stress on coordination between
Operations to go on: Advani
NEW DELHI, July 6 (PTI, UNI) India will not fall a prey to any deception by Pakistan this time and the ongoing military operation at Kargil will continue "till the eviction of the last intruder and complete Indian victory," Home Minister L.K. Advani said here today.
"The war is not yet over. We will not be betrayed this time," Mr Advani said addressing a function organised to mark the 98th birth anniversary of Shyama Prasad Mukherjee, a former minister and founder of Jan Sangh.
"In the wake of Pakistans growing isolation in the comity of nations and Indian Army recapturing the strategic Tiger Hill many people are saying that the war is over. I say, no, it is not yet over," the Home Minister said.
"The military operation at Kargil will continue till the eviction of the last Pakistani intruder," he asserted.
"This is also the overwhelming national sentiment and commitment and we humbly appreciate it," Mr Advani said adding "time has not yet come for a permanent or final solution to the Kashmir problem.
"It is altogether a different chapter that such an opportunity had come in 1971. Nowhere perhaps 93,000 living soldiers of a country had surrendered like Pakistani force did under General Niazi," he said, adding "but then came the Simla agreement.
"Well the agreement is binding on us as well, but we will achieve complete victory this time," he said while expressing confidence.
Taking a dig at Opposition parties, especially the Congress, the Home Minister said "we have answers to all your queries on Kargil. But do not forget the country will also question you on many fronts.
"The one-third of Kashmir would not have been occupied by Pakistan without the 1948 ceasefire. It came due to a UN resolution," he said without naming anyone.
The Home Minister said "even this time Pakistani designs were on similar lines. They thought their intrusion would be followed by immediate third party intervention. But the government has handled the issue well to avoid such a scenario".
Paying tribute to Mukherjee, the Home Minister said "one great value we inherited as legacy from him is to handle complex issues well".
"Today, while our brave soldiers are giving a befitting reply to Pakistan, at global level our diplomatic efforts are on," he said.
Mr Advani said similarly in internal politics, the BJP, although associated itself with other parties, had never compromised on its basic ideology and therefore has progressed.
The function was attended among others by senior party leaders, including Mr V.K. Malhotra, Mr Mange Ram Garg, Mr Jagdish Mukhi, Mr O.P. Kohili and Mr Vijay Goel.
Meanwhile, Minister of State for External Affairs Vasundhara Raje has ruled out any resumption of talks between India and Pakistan until the sanctity of the Line of Control is restored.
In a rare interview to Star Plus to be telecast on Friday she said, "I dont think we can even discuss this (talks) at the moment... status quo ante has to happen and then from there well take it... I would like to see them go back to what it was before I can talk about going further.
The Minister also stressed that India would not cross the LoC at this juncture, she said, "the international community is stood by India and that is a great achievement... weve made it very clear that as of now we dont wish to cross the LoC but as the days wear on and the ground situation changes who knows what well have to do... (however) I would like to make it very clear that as of now we have no intention of crossing the LoC because we do have to take into account the safety and security of our people.
Ms Raje reiterated Indias stand that it was conscious of its responsibilities as a nuclear power and committed to the maintenance of peace on the subcontinent. "We dont live in isolation today and we also have to take into reckoning that we are part of the international community. There is a requirement that we keep peace and amity on the subcontinent.
Ms Raje felt that at
this crucial stage of the crisis India would have to use
both diplomacy and military strength to overcome the
Kargil crisis. "I think in todays world one
would have look at a combination of both... Weve
been able to isolate Pakistan (but) I dont think we
would get in the way of the Army at all. The Prime
Minister has made it very clear that the Army has full
Tohra SAD pact with BSP
NEW DELHI, July 6 The newly-formed Sarb Hind Shiromani Akali Dal and the Bahujan Samaj Party have entered into an electoral alliance in Punjab for the forthcoming Lok Sabha polls.
Announcing the decision, Mr Prem Singh Chandumajra, General Secretary of the party, said that a formal announcement of the pact would be made at a rally in Patiala on July 17.
He said the BSP and the Sarb Hind SAD would contest elections in Punjab together and the party would extend support to the BSP in other states, particularly Uttar Pradesh, Haryana, Rajasthan, Delhi and Madhya Pradesh.
The possibility of the Sarb Hind SAD fielding candidates in some of the states in association with the BSP was also not ruled out, he said.
Mr Chandumajra, who met Mr Kanshi Ram today to finalise the pact said the BSP chief would attend the Patiala rally along with the Sarb Hind SAD President, Mr Gurcharan Singh Tohra and former Akal Takht chief, Bhai Ranjit Singh.
He described the BSP-Sarb Hind SAD pact as natural alliance stating that both parties represent the Dalits and the weaker sections of society.
On the possibility of alliance with other like-minded parties, Mr Chandumajra said that a tie-up with other SAD parties and the Left parties would be made after consulting Mr Kanshi Ram.
The Sarb Hind SAD is also holding talks with two factions of the Bharatiya Kisan Union (Ekta group) and Mr Bhupinder Singh Mann for electoral understanding, he said.
Meanwhile, Mr Chandumajra charged that the current financial problem being faced by Punjab was due to fiscal mismanagement of the Badal government.
He said for the past 10 days, the state treasury was closed down and bills of contractors and other employees were not being cleared.
Charging the state government of Rs 90 crore diversion of funds from the centrally-sponsored Scheduled Caste Financial Corporation and the Army Canteen Welfare Fund, he said the funds were utilised to clear salaries of government employees.
He alleged that Ministers of the Badal government had spent several crore of rupees in foreign tours while the people of Punjab did not get benefit of even a single paise from these tours.
The place that made men out
NEW DELHI, July 6 It is a different world altogether at the National Defence Academy (NDA) in the pristine forests of Sahyadris at Khadakvasla, 30 Km from Pune, as over 1,500 cadets future officers of the Indian armed forces head back to their second home to resume training.
Waiting for them there are about 300 pidly ikkis (first termers) huddled up in all possible hiding places in the 8,300 acres academy.
All of them would be hopelessly unsuccessful in the cat and mouse game, get caught by their seniors who would say: come here, come here, come here you pidly ikki, tell me my name, my squadron, my place, my girlfriends name...
Obviously he would not have the answers. Get bloody rolling, the senior would bark, and the poor junior cadet would have no choice but to get started till his fundas get cleared and he learns the golden rule at NDA do whatever you want, but dont get caught.
But it is not just the juniors who do front-rolls. NDA had the privilege of seeing several generals who came to their alma mater for its golden jubilee celebrations (GJC) earlier this year getting started just to relive fond memories of the place that made men out of them.
The old salts were so excited to return to the academy that they rolled, ran, marched and shouted just to relive the good old days, says 18-year-old Cadet Harsh Gaurav Sisodia, returning to NDA as a dukhiari dukki (second termer) after four weeks of fun at home in Dehra Doon.
The cadets sang noted Pakistani pop singer Ali Haiders number `Purani jeans aur guitar, which has by now almost become the anthem of the academy, and all officers had tears in their eyes.
Some of the officers got so senti (emotional) that they clutched on to their wives and started howling in the hall itself, a bemused Cdt Harsh says.
Even I might feel the same way after I pass out. You get to know of the real worth of a place only when you are out of it.
Never before in the history of the Indian armed forces had so many officers with such heavy tabs gathered under one roof, says 19-year-old Lakhnavi Nawab Cadet Mohit Singh Rathore, a snorting fifth termer looking forward to take on the new bacchas (kids).
It was an amazing sight. The place was virtually teeming with serving and retired generals, admirals and air marshals, recalls Cdt Rathore, widely tipped to be a psycho (troublesome senior) by his juniors.
Our squadron was lucky as one of the three officers from the first course, which passed out in 1950, who came for the GJC was from `Delta squadron and came to speak to us, says proud Cadet Gagan Goyal of 100th course which now makes up the third termers or the Tang Tikkis.
Oh you should have seen how jealous other squadrons were of us.
The whole academy was decked up like a bride. Only those who have been in NDA can understand the amount of hard work that went into readying the academy for the GJC, says 20-year-old Cadet Vipul Harsh.
We polished all the floors, stairs and woodwork, brassoed all the door handles and not a speck of dust was allowed to settle anywhere. In fact, when we had to move around, we used to cover our soles with clean vests and did not touch the brass handles with our hands to avoid spoiling the polish, says Cdt Vipul.
But it is not all fun at the academy as the cadets have to go through a gruelling 15-hour schedule everyday, which includes studying, physical training, games, hobbies and other group activities.
You drop dead each night on your bed, and often on the study table, says Cdt Gagan.
Holi in the academy is a special one, and we prepared a pond of `kichad (slush), and pulled everyone into it, including the officers, says Cdt Gagan, another nawab.
We all went totally berserk and tore off each others T-shirts, shorts... et al, the cadet from Lucknow winks.
The journey to and from NDA is also special. As a majority of the cadets travel by a special train which runs from Pune to Delhi.
Your attention Doon Bogie, mid-term mood in Doon Bogie is the announcement as the NDA-special enters a station, to be replaced by your attention Doon Bogie, mid-term mood over in Doon Bogie, says Cdt Harsh, reminiscensing about his first tryst with the NDA special.
Mid-term mood means that all the cadets have the privilege of doing whatever they want and junior-senior divide no longer exists, he explains.
When the train is in between stations, all hell breaks loose.
At the station, reactions on returning to the academy depend on the term the cadet is in.
For the junior termers, it is going back to the same old hell but for us maharajas (fifth and sixth termers), it is fun unlimited, says Cdt Anupam Dey, a chchakka or sixth termer from Delhi.
NEW DELHI, July 6 The Bharatiya Janata Party today termed as absurd the Communists interpretation of the Clinton-Sharif joint statement.
It is absurd that the Communists should interpret the Clinton-Sharif joint statement as some insidious attempt at third party intervention, party general secretary Narendra Modi told reporters here today.
Mr Modi said that the joint statement issued after the talks made it amply clear that all issues between India and Pakistan would be resolved through a bilateral dialogue. He said that the Vajpayee government had categorically ruled out third party mediation and was firm on continuing military action to evict Pakistani intruders.
Mr Modi said that the Vajpayee governments restraint despite all provocations from the Pakistani side had been appreciated by the international community.
It may be recalled that the international community had hailed Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayees Lahore bus journey and the Lahore Declaration as symbols of Indias sincerity in improving ties with Pakistan. When Pakistan violated the LoC and, thereby, the letter and spirit of the Lahore Declaration, the international community came down like a ton of bricks on Pakistan, Mr Modi said. The party general secretary said that the Indian governments diplomatic success had added to Indias stature and strengthened its resolve to free Indian territory of Pakistani infiltrators. He said that instead of hailing this success, the Congress and the Communists had been berating the government and overlooking Pakistans treacherous action.
Mr Atal Behari
Vajpayees polite refusal to President
Clintons invitation to Washington for talks proved
the stand that India was not in favour of third-party
mediation. If the entire world is one with India on its
stand on the Kargil issue, it should not be termed as
international mediation or intervention. In 1971, when
Mrs Indira Gandhi went all over the world, she was not
seeking international mediation, he said.
Delhi-Lahore bus: increase trips
NEW DELHI, July 6 (PTI) Pakistan has sought an increase in the number of trips of the Delhi-Lahore bus service, launched as a symbol of friendship, notwithstanding the border clashes in Kashmir.
A letter from the Pakistans Transport Ministry requesting an increase in frequency of the service was received by Delhi Transport Minister Parvez Hashmi on July 4.
Their (Pakistans) request is not being considered at the moment due to the Kargil conflict, Mr Hashmi told PTI.
However, he said, the Delhi-Lahore bus service is running smoothly with both the sides providing adequate security arrangements.
Ordnance factories to step up production
NAGPUR, July 6 (UNI) Defence Minister George Fernandes has said ordnance factories in the country have been directed to step up production in the wake of the Kargil crisis.
Talking to newsmen at the airport here last night before departing for Delhi. Mr Fernandes, who visited three ordnance factories in the region, disclosed that the directive for increasing production had been issued in the last week of May.
Accompanied by Director-General of Ordnance Factories, Mr Raiagopalan, the Defence Minister visited the ordnance factories at Nagpur, Jawaharnagar in Bhandara district and Bhadrawati in Chandrapur district.
Badal challenges Sonia to
debate on J&K
NEW DELHI, July 6 Punjab Chief Minister, Parkash Singh Badal today challenged the Congress President Mrs Sonia Gandhi or any other party member to have a direct and open television debate on the Kashmir issue since independence after the Kargil crisis was over.
Mr Badal who is in the Capital to attend the Chief Ministers meeting convened by the Prime Minister tomorrow on Kargil, charged the Congress with having committed the blunder of taking the Kashmir issue to the United Nations in 1948.
Mr Badal also called on the Prime Minister here this evening.
It does not lie in the mouth of the Congress to talk of fears of third party intervention as it was a Congress Prime Minister who committed the blunder of taking the Kashmir issue to the UN in 1948, he said in a statement issued here.
Taking the Congress party on, Mr Badal was critical of insinuations made by a Congress spokesperson yesterday that the Clinton-Sharif joint statement indicated that India had allowed a third party mediatory role for the USA on Kashmir.
This is ridiculous. The Prime Minister has handled the whole situation with a statesmanship never displayed by any Indian leader before this. Mr Vajpayee upheld the nations dignity by turning down Mr Clintons invitation to take part in the Washington talks. I am sure that if we had a Congress PM at this juncture, he or she would have airdashed to Washington for a photo-opportunity. The spokesmen of that party are deliberately ignoring the fact that the joint statement clearly identifies Pakistan as the guilty party. The Pakistan misadventure in Kargil, he said, was not an act of covert intrusion, as being described by the media, but an open and naked aggression and challenge to the unity and independence of the country and must be given the wholesome response that it deserves.
He also expressed the apprehension that Pakistans total military and diplomatic frustration might drive it towards escalation of hostilities towards Punjab.
Mr Badal said the Nawaz Sharif-Clinton joint statement in Washington was a forceful proof of Pakistans direct involvement in the military adventurism across the Line of Control.
He expressed satisfaction that while some political parties in the country continued to indulge in scoring political points even at the expense of national interest, the brave Indian Armed Forces had remained totally focussed on ensuring that the aggression against this country was vacated.
Pak known for its perfidy: Thakre
PANAJI, July 6 (UNI, PTI) Bharatiya Janata Party President Kushabhau Thakre said here today that unless every inch of aggression in Kargil was vacated and every single intruder thrown out, the defence forces would continue their assault.
Mr Thakre, who was here in connection with the partys Goa executive committee meeting, said India cannot take Pakistans words at face value.
Pakistan is known for its perfidy.
Mr Thakre said the Nawaz Sharif government stood isolated after being rejected by China and America and several other countries.
Its plan to internationalise the Kashmir issue has failed miserably, the BJP President said.
This is a bilateral problem and should be solved in accordance with the provisions of the Simla accord and the Lahore agreement, he said.
The BJP President said after Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayees Lahore bus journey, the entire world got the message that India wanted friendship with Pakistan.
Both the internal and international policies of the BJP-led government had succeeded, he claimed.
1 held for raping British
NEW DELHI, July 6 The Delhi police today nabbed one of the two youths who allegedly raped a 26-year-old British woman inside a car in the Lajpat Nagar area of South Delhi late last night.
Manjit Singh (24), a resident of DDA Flats, Kalkaji, who works in a travel agency run by one Raj Gupta, was arrested this evening, the police said, adding the Maruti Zen car used in committing the offence had also been recovered.
However, Raj Gupta, a resident of Govindpuri Extension, also wanted in the case, has absconded.
British national Tenny Gardin, engaged in some import export business, was allegedly lured away by the youth from a bar in Greater Kailash last night and taken to a couple of hotels before she was raped in a car.
Stress on coordination between
NEW DELHI, July 6 The war-like situation in Kargil has emphatically brought into focus the defence preparedness and the contemporary relevance of 1971 war which India won against Pakistan.
The defence personnel and bureaucrats who were at the helm at that time analysed the relevance of 1971 war now and the contributions of the then Defence Minister Babu Jagjivan Ram.
The speakers were participating in the Babu Jagjivan Ram Memorial lecture organised by the Jagjivan Ashram Trust here late last evening.
The hero of Bangladesh liberation, Lt Gen Jagjit Singh Aurora, who was heading the Eastern Command then, spoke of his close association with Babu Jagjivan Ram and the Defence Ministers understanding of the needs of the defence forces and personnel.
Lt. Gen Aurora recalled how he had accompanied the Defence Minister on his visits to the front and how Mr Jagjivan Ram had addressed the jawans and enthused them with a feeling of victory.
Talking about contemporary relevance of the 1971 war, Admiral S M Nanda, the Naval Chief during the war, stressed the need for greater communication between the forces and the bureaucrats. He also laid emphasis on the importance of procurement and no cuts in the Defence Budgets.
Much before the 1971 war actually broke out we - the three chiefs - used to have daily meeting with the Defence Minister and the intelligence chiefs. Later even the Prime Minister attended the meetings. Whatever decisions taken then would be implemented without any administrative delays. And this is how the defence of the country should be managed now, he said.
The situation is serious now. We have been attacked without provocation. Kashmir is an obsession with Pakistan and until the matter is finally settled, we must be in a state of constant preparedness. Though Nawaz Sharif has said that they would withdraw to the Line-of-Control (LoC) we must really ensure that they do so, he said.
Since they do not acknowledge the existence of the LoC, we have to monitor the withdrawal and make sure that all of infiltrators leave our country, he stated.
Admiral Nanda emphasised the need to find a permanent solution to the issue. Even if the LoC is seen as a permanent border there is no harm if peace is assured. This no peace-no war situation is not acceptable.
Air Chief Marshal S K Mehra, who was a Wing Commander during the 1971 war, talked about the Pakistani savagery. The mutilation of the bodies of our men is not a new instance of Pakistani savagery. In 1971, they were committing genocide in Bangladesh before Dhaka fell.
Former Lok Sabha MP, Ms Meira Kumar spoke about her fathers patriotism. He said if the war is thrust on us it will be fought in their land. He had promised that any land taken during the war would not be returned. But he was very disappointed when during the negotiations India returned all that had been achieved by the Army.
Prof M.L. Sondhi said Babuji was an inspiration in our lives today as we face a grim challenge in Kargil. His mindset and strategic approach that India should have the capability of repelling an attack at a time and place of its own choice but a moments notice if necessary. The then Defence Minister worked hard to secure a rightful place for the Indian armed forces and prepared them to meet future challenges.
Dr K.B. Lall, former
principal Defence Secretary, who presided over the
function, spoke about the relationship between the
defence services and the Defence Ministry was one of
amity and fellow feeling. The Defence Ministers
work environment generated cordiality, confidence and
cooperation and the gaze was firmly fixed on the task, on
the goal to win the war decisively.
|Stamps on Jijabai,
NEW DELHI: Two commemorative stamps on leading lights of the freedom struggle - Jijabai, mother of Maratha warrior Shivaji, and P.S. Kumaraswamy Raja, a Congress leader from Tamil Nadu, are being released this week. While Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee will release the stamp on Jijabai on Wednesday, Union Law Minister Ram Jethmalani will release the stamp on Kumaraswamy Raja on July 8. PTI
UNESCO envoy to
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border under vigil
Vasant Pawar NCP
chief in Nasik
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