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HindustanTimes Sun,20 Apr 2014

Sarabjit killing: BJP wants India to recall envoy to Pak

PTI  New Delhi, May 02, 2013
First Published: 15:39 IST(2/5/2013) | Last Updated: 15:52 IST(2/5/2013)

BJP on Thursday demanded that India call back its high commissioner in Pakistan and scale down diplomatic relations with Islamabad in the wake of the death of Sarabjit Singh after a brutal attack.

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BJP President Rajnath Singh told reporters in Delhi that Sarabjit's murder was unfortunate. Condemning the incident, he said had India taken effective diplomatic steps in the past, such an incident would not have taken place.

"The Indian high commissioner in Pakistan should be called back and diplomatic relations should be scaled down till Pakistan gives full assurance that there will be no provocation or protection to any terror activities against India and full protection will be given to Indian prisoners in Pakistani jails," Singh said.

He added that India should lodge a strong protest at the international fora against Pakistan on Sarabjit's murder.

The BJP President alleged that the attack on Sarabjit in a Pakistani jail is the outcome of India's weak foreign policy.

"I consider this a diplomatic failure. It is well known what kind of anti-India activities are taking place in Pakistan. Had India taken effective diplomatic steps in the past such incidents would not have taken place," Singh said.

He referred to the earlier attack by Pakistan forces in which the heads of two Indian soldiers Hemraj and Sudhakar were smashed and Hemraj's head was taken away by them.

Singh pointed out that after this incident he had suggested that India call back its high commissioner in Islamabad and scale down diplomatic relations but the government did not pay heed to his advice.

"At this point I only want to say that Congress-led UPA government has tarnished the image of India at the international fora and has sent the message that India is a weak nation. It has given rise to the perception in the world that whatever activities take place against India, it will not even react to them," Singh said.

Singh demanded that the government give adequate compensation to the family members of Sarabjit and employment to somebody from his family.

He promised full support to the government in the fight against terror. "Several times in the past I have said that government should not have any kind of fear and we will fully support it on this issue," Singh said.

BJP maintained that the possibility of such attacks taking place in the future cannot be denied and India should take up the issue of safety of Indian prisoners in Pakistan jails. He said the attack on Sarabjit was not an isolated incident and other Indian prisoners - including Chamel Singh who was killed in a similar manner have been attacked in the past.

BJP leader Sushma Swaraj also condemned the incident. She said, "It is a cold blooded murder. This is not the way civilised nations behave."

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