March 2001 News

Action against rebels still on, says Centre

7 March 2001
The Asian Age

New Delhi: Union home minister L.K. Advani said on Wednesday operations against the militants “have not been abandoned” by the security forces. He said Pakistan’s response to peace initiative was “not adequate.” Mr Advani said that the security forces were on full alert and have been asked to take action against anyone, who could be seen carrying arms. He maintained that it was a “mistaken notion” that operation against the militants have been stopped after the ceasefire. He also refuted the feeling that the “morale of the forces were at the lowest.” The security forces have been asked to take steps to prevent any attack on them. Quoting figures, Mr Advani said during the past few weeks, at least 227 militants have been killed by the security forces. He claimed that during the past two months 122 militants were killed as against 58 security personnel in the Valley. Denying that the ceasefire would give militants an opportunity to re-group, Mr Advani said that security forces were continuing operations and would to act on the basis of adequate information. Talking about fidayeen (suicide squads) attacks, Mr Advani said that this was not a recent development. “Since the attacks are now getting highlighted, people think that operation against the militants have stopped. Its not true,” he told the House. Defending the ceasefire, Mr Advani said that the Pakistan’s response to stop cross-border shelling was “not adequate.” He said that government went ahead with the decision of ceasefire after holding talks with all those concerned in the political arena, administration and even the security forces. He said that government went for the peace initiative keeping in mind three major sections, which include people of Jammu and Kashmir, international community and the militants. He admitted that the response of the militants was not “satisfactory.”

 

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