BJP flays Narayanan's remarks

"The prime minister should tell Narayanan not to shoot off his mouth," said BJP spokesman Prasad.

india Updated: Oct 23, 2006 19:12 IST

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Monday criticised National Security Advisor MK Narayanan's remarks in a television interview that India didn't have "clinching evidence" of the involvement of Pakistan's ISI intelligence agency in the July 11 Mumbai train bombings.

"The prime minister should tell Narayanan not to shoot off his mouth as his statements often create either confusion or panic," BJP spokesman Ravi Shankar Prasad said on Monday.

"By making such statements, Narayanan has given a big elbow room to Pakistan in denying its role in fomenting terror in India," he added. The National Security Advisor (NSA)'s statement have also berated the efforts of Mumbai Police, which cracked the bombings case, he said.

"In his last interview, Narayanan had made dreadful claims that India's atomic energy installations are under threat of terrorist attack and caused panic in the country," Prasad said.

The NSA had also claimed then that the Lashker-e-Taiba and Al-Qaeda elements had infiltrated into the Indian Army, creating doubts about our own armed forces leading to a witch-hunt, he added.

"Now we have the NSA publicly claiming that we don't have 'clinching evidence' of ISI involvement in the Mumbai blasts but have 'good evidence'. Surely, the nation would like to be educated about the distinction between 'good' and 'clinching' evidence as far as involvement of the ISI in the Mumbai blasts is concerned," the BJP spokesman said.

"The NSA as a security expert would certainly know that in the case of sponsoring cross-border terrorism by a different country, 'good evidence' is as good as 'clinching evidence'," he added.

"It will be prudent for the prime minister and his NSA not to make a comic affair of national security with their flip-flop statements, particularly in relation to Pakistan's role in sponsoring cross border terrorism," Prasad said.

Narayanan had made the comments in an interview to CNN-IBN broadcast on Sunday. He had said that though the evidence before the Mumbai Police was not "clinching" it was "pretty good".

First Published: Oct 23, 2006 19:12 IST