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PM: Our neighbours will have to pay if…

india Updated: Nov 28, 2008 02:55 IST
Nandini R Iyer
Nandini R Iyer
Hindustan Times
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In an extraordinarily harsh stance, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh in an address to the nation made it clear that neighbouring nations would have to face a "cost" if they allowed their territory to be used to launch attacks on India.

Dr Singh, who has been moderate in his speeches so far, said, "We will take up strongly with our neighbours that the use of their territory for launching attacks on us will not be tolerated, and that there would be a cost if suitable measures are not taken by them."

Asserting that India would not countenance such attacks, the prime minister said the government would "restrict entry of suspects into the country." "We will go after these individuals and organisations and make sure that every perpetrator, organiser and supporter of terror, whatever his affiliation or religion may be, pays a heavy price," he said.

The prime minister announced that the government would immediately set up a Federal Investigation Agency to go into terrorist crimes. "Instruments like the National Security Act will be employed to deal with situations of this kind and existing laws will be tightened to ensure that there are no loopholes available to terrorists to escape the clutches of the law."

Describing the attacks as "well-planned and well-orchestrated, probably with external linkages," Dr Singh said "it is evident that the group which carried out these attacks, based outside the country, had come with single-minded determination to create havoc in the commercial capital."

Promising that his government would "attend in an urgent and serious manner to police reforms," the prime minister said India would not countenance a situation in which the safety and security of citizens could be violated with impunity by terrorists. "We are determined to take whatever measures are necessary to ensure safety and security or our citizens."