Urges government to adopt zero tolerance towards terror

Senior Bharatiya Janata Party leader L.K. Advani said here on Thursday that Wednesday's blasts here occurred owing to policy failure and not due to intelligence failure.

“I feel sad that Mumbai has become a favourite target of terrorists,” he said at a press conference after visiting the blast sites and two hospitals. He demanded that Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) be declared a terrorist organisation.

“When we were in power, we decided that our approach towards terrorism will be of zero tolerance. This government has changed its stand so many times,” he said.

“I condemn yesterday's [Wednesday] attack and appeal to the government to shed its ambivalence towards terrorism. It must be categorical and firm in declaring that India's policy towards terrorism is that of zero tolerance. Whether there is any Pakistan link behind this attack or not, the government should demand that Pakistan should dismantle its terror infrastructure. There is no point in talking to them till then,” he said.

“Even the last terror attack [November 26, 2008 attack] here was engineered by ISI. The fact is that the ISI is not a non-state actor. It is part of Pakistan's establishment, but the ISI must be declared a terrorist organisation.”

Pakistani people themselves were upset with Pakistan's obsession with Kashmir, especially when they were witnessing India's progress, he noted.

Mr. Advani said he would not ask for resignation of anyone in the wake of the blasts. “They [government] are not even willing to face Parliament. One after the other, many scandals have happened during this government's tenure. Now let the people choose who they want.”

He refused to comment on Rahul Gandhi's statement that every single terror attack cannot be stopped. “I would not like to say anything about this. But even the United States of America is a democracy like us and I have not heard of any attack on them after 9/11. In the eyes of the fundamentalists, the U.S. is a bigger enemy than India.”

Mr. Advani said he had suggested to the Prime Minister that disaster management should include man-made disasters such as terror attacks. “Man-made disasters are equally important. We must take into account sustained care of the victims.”

Keywords: Mumbai blasts

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