N-E vulnerable to terrorism: Sonia

Addressing a poll rally in Shillong, she said there was "serious" danger of cross-border terror spilling into North-East if not checked.

india Updated: Feb 20, 2003 12:22 IST

The Congress on Thursday said the Central government had failed to curb cross-border terrorism, with the northeast becoming vulnerable to threats from neighbouring nations.

"Cross-border terrorism has assumed serious proportions and there is a serious danger of its spilling into India's sensitive northeastern region unless adequate steps are taken by New Delhi," Congress president Sonia Gandhi said in Shillong.

She was addressing an election rally in Shillong, capital of the northeastern state of Meghalaya.

"Unstable regional politics in the northeast was largely responsible for aiding cross-border terrorism, coupled with an indecisive government in New Delhi," Sonia told over 10,000 Congress party supporters at the historic Polo Ground.

Meghalaya is among three other Indian states that go assembly polls on February 26.

Launching a vitriolic attack on the BJP, the Congress leader said her party was the only viable alternative and for ensuring security to people.

"The BJP has all along been playing divisive politics and trying to drive a wedge among people across the country on communal and religious lines," Sonia said.

"We have never betrayed the interests of the majority or minority communities unlike other political parties."

Sonia said her party had always supported tribal people in the northeast. "The tribal people in the northeast should be allowed to maintain their distinct ethnic identities and should not be disturbed," she said.

First Published: Feb 13, 2003 20:30 IST