Terror taint : The Tribune India

Terror taint

Political parties must toughen membership norms

Terror taint

Photo for representational purpose only. - File photo

REPORTS of alleged links of Lashkar-e-Taiba commander Talib Hussain and Udaipur murder accused Riaz Akhtari with the BJP have laid bare the alarming possibility of terrorists infiltrating political parties or becoming pawns in the hands of some scheming politicians. Hussain, who was overpowered by villagers in J&K’s Reasi district on Sunday, was appointed the IT and social media incharge of the party’s Minority Morcha (Jammu province) in early May. The BJP claims that he resigned from the party in May itself, weeks after joining it. Dubbing Hussain a mole planted by Pakistan-based terrorists, the BJP has alleged that he was planning to kill the party’s top leadership. Some party leaders are also picking holes in the ‘liberal’ online membership system that facilitates the entry of people of all hues without any background verification.

Predictably, the developments have triggered a blame game. The Congress has accused the saffron party of sponsoring terrorism in J&K, while the PDP has alleged that the BJP is using criminal elements to further its agenda of communal division. The RJD has even claimed that the majority of the anti-nationals involved in various disturbances have direct or indirect links with the BJP/RSS. The ruling party cannot afford to merely brush aside these serious accusations by the Opposition; it must come clean on these dubious members. A thorough probe should be conducted to find out whether any party leader is hand in glove with terror recruits or their handlers. The black sheep who sully the party’s reputation — and jeopardise national security — should be promptly weeded out.

Infiltration by terrorists is a menace that makes it incumbent on all political parties to remain vigilant. Hence, the response to these goings-on should be restrained and proportionate. No party can do rigorous screening of every prospective entrant. However, tighter membership norms can help in keeping out the trouble-makers. The responsibility for the induction of party members should be fixed at every level. Above all, it is vital to build political consensus on not letting terror groups misuse any party’s platform to perpetrate anti-India activities. 

Tribune Shorts


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