Sunday, December 30, 2001, Chandigarh, India

National Capital Region--Delhi


M A I N   N E W S

No means to be spared: PM
Campaign against terrorism
Tribune News Service

Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee with BJP President Janakrishanamurthy
Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee with BJP President Janakrishanamurthy at the BJP national executive meeting in New Delhi on Saturday. — PTI photo

New Delhi, December 29
Asking his party to “prepare the nation in close cooperation with all other parties-ruling or Opposition” for a determined fight against Islamabad-sponsored cross-border terrorism”, Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee said today India would do its “utmost to avoid a war” with Pakistan.

Addressing the emergency meeting of the BJP national executive, the Prime Minister said while the country would “use all means and resources” to achieve the objective of defeating cross-border terrorism, “We should take special care to ensure that no decisive issue are raised by anybody at this juncture”.

In an obvious reference to organisations like the Vishva Hindu Parishad and similar organisations, Mr Vajpayee said:” It is our prime duty to see that communal peace and harmony remains undisturbed throughout the country”.

Taking care to preserve the recently achieved unity of purpose among all political parties in the country’s fight against terrorism, the Prime Minister thanked the Opposition parties for the support they had extended to the government at this hour of crisis.

Mr Vajpayee said the country would like the world community, which had earlier remained indifferent to Islamabad-sponsored proxy war against India for close two decades, to bring pressure on Pakistan to take effective steps to stop its policy of cross-broder terrorism.

Giving details of the government’s approach on the issue with a view to buring hawkish and jingoist voices in the party, the Prime Minister said: “No means will be spared, although we shall do our utmost to avoid war with Pakistan”.

Making it clear to the nation that India would not come under any external pressure to dilute the struggle against terrorism, Mr Vajpayee said the country “shall fight this battle on its own to achieve” the objective.

Welcoming the understanding and support extended to India by the international community, he said India would intensify its diplomatic efforts in the days to come to secure a concrete dimension to this understanding and support.

Maintaining that the success in Afghanistan was principally due to the uninterrupted global unity against terrorism, he said India urged the international community to show similar resolve in the struggle against terrorism aimed at India since its genesis, fuelled by religious extremism, in Afghanistan and in India “is one and the same”.

While India’s policy on Afghanistan had worked, in contrast Pakistan’s stand on terrorism had been exposed to be opportunistic, Mr Vajpayee said.

General Musharraf had hinted that he chose to join the international coalition against the Taliban with the sole purpose of getting Kashmir, the Prime Minister said, adding that “we accept this challenge”.

Earlier, BJP President K. Jana Krishnamurthi also toned down the party’s stand on terrorism.

Referring to the December 13 attack on Parliament, Mr Krishnamurthi said it was but natural that the entire nation was angry at this type of affront.

He said the “remarkable response of the people in rallying together to support the efforts of the government taken to eliminate the terrorism is something unique in this country”.

The hawkish voices in the BJP after the December 13 attack on Parliament got buried as the party adopted a political resolution which backed the Vajpayee government’s diplomatic offensive and neither sought direct retaliatory action against Pakistan nor made any specific demands to counter the hostile neighbour.Back


All-party meeting today
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, December 29
To drum up support from all major political parties at home on his government’s strategy to deal with Pakistan, Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee has convened a meeting at his residence tomorrow.

The meeting, will be attended by Mrs Sonia Gandhi, Mr Somnath Chatterjee (CPM), Mr Ajoy Chakraborty (CPI), Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav (SP), among others.

Mr Vajpayee would brief the political parties about the latest Indo-Pak developments and the diplomatic and political measures taken in retaliation for the Musharraf regime’s inaction on Indian demands in the wake of the December 13 attack.


CCS reviews situation

New Delhi, December 29
Members of the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) today reviewed the security situation.

Highly placed sources said Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee discussed the steps taken by India and its response by Pakistan in the wake of the December 13 terrorist attack. The CCS took note of the recent statement by US President George W. Bush and Gen Pervez Musharraf, and did not take any major follow-up action. UNIBack

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