In the wake of reports of some pro-Khalistan extremist groups trying to revive militancy in Punjab, the Centre on Monday said it would deal firmly with any such attempt to fuel terrorism in the state.
"There are some instances and we will deal them firmly," union home minister Sushilkumar Shinde told reporters here when asked about efforts to revive militancy in Punjab.
"I ask people to introspect as the country suffered a lot because of militancy and the economy, too, had suffered," he said.
The home minister, however, refused to comment on whether the ruling Akali-BJP government was soft towards pro-Khalistan groups which had intensified their activities.
On Sunday, Shinde had said that Punjab had gone through days of terrorism and in view of this, the state government must do introspection before taking a decision on setting up the controversial Operation Bluestar memorial.
Security agencies have also said that an extensive fund-raising campaign is being undertaken by secessionist Sikh groups in Europe and North America, allegedly at the instance of Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI).
The agencies have informed about the movement of banned Babbar Khalsa International and Khalistan Commando Force in Western countries with the aim of radicalising Sikh youth.
The attack on Operation Bluestar commander Lt Gen Kuldip Singh Brar (retd) and disruption of India's Independence Day celebrations in London this year, too, were the outcome of activities of anti-India elements, the sources claimed.