BJP set to review its stand on security

  • Shekhar Iyer, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
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  • Updated: Feb 24, 2013 01:09 IST

A rethink on BJP's security plank in the wake of the blasts in Hyderabad and the hangings of two major terror convicts - Ajmal Amir Kasab and Afzal Guru - is set to happen when the party's national council meet in New Delhi on March 2 and 3.

These developments, along with the December 16 gang rape of a 21-year-old and subsequent outrage which shook the Capital, will engage the BJP leaders to project their ideas on public safety and security, ahead of the 2014 polls.

Kasab was hanged on November 21 last year, a day before Parliament's winter session opened, the hanging of Afzal Guru, came nearly 10 days before the start of the budget session Feb 21.

These hangings - in a gap of two and half months -- were seen by BJP leaders as a bid to rob them of an aggressive pitch on the issue of security ahead of the 2014 polls.

But the Hyderabad blasts are a rude reminder to "what's still wrong at our end," they say. Public concern is back over terrorism due to the blasts, which took place after a gap of 17 months.

The focus has returned on the role of Pakistan-based groups and their modules in India and the absence of counter measures, according to BJP leaders.

They now want a clear-cut approach to be put forth by their party.

BJP leader LK Advani on Saturday echoed party chief Rajnath Singh's assertion in Hyderabad a day earlier, that there was certainly a Pakistan angle behind the blasts.

On Friday, Leader of opposition in Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj had told home minister SK Shinde that security failure was apparent despite intelligence alerts and it's time political issues had to be kept aside.

Her counterpart, Arun Jaitley, was more specific in the Rajya Sabha.

He listed specific steps: infusing professionalism, ending non-essential task like political snooping, infiltrating and smashing Pak-inspired modules, procuring hard cross-border intelligence and end being stubborn about a "super" Central machinery like NCTC. 

"The war on terrorism must go uninterrupted, depoliticized and not loosened in any manner so that incidents are not repeated."

Also, as BJP spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad put it, "This government should rise above vote bank politics. On every passing day, Shinde is being seen as unsuccessful home minister."


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