Defending huge allocation for defence in the Union Budget, Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram said today that it was necessary as neighbouring countries including Pakistan were treating India as their enemy.

India’s Defence Budget for 2010 -11 has been pegged at Rs 147,344 crore.

“Pakistan is training terrorists and allowing them to infiltrate into India and is trying to drive a wedge between Muslims and Hindus in the country. Whenever we want to talk to Pakistan, we have to talk about terrorism, but that country frowns upon the idea,” he said.

Pakistan is the “centre of terrorism” and all terrorist activities, whether in Afghanistan or U.S., could be traced to Pakistan, the Home Minister said.

First Enemy

Calling Naxalism as the country’s “first enemy,” Union Home Minister P. Chidambaram said the government was determined to uproot Maoists in the next two to three years.

Hours after visiting the Maoist heartland in Lalgarh in West Bengal, Mr. Chidambaram said Naxalism has assumed gigantic proportions as it had not been dealt with properly in the last 10 to 12 years.

“Naxalism is the first enemy of the country,” he said addressing a public meeting at suburban Avadi, 45 km from Chennai, on Sunday night.

“We are determined to uproot Naxals. Only because we are tolerant over the past 10 to 12 years, we’ve got this big task now,” he said, adding “the Centre is firm, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Sonia Gandhi are firm.”

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