Whenever terror strikes occurred during the NDA rule, Home Minister L.K. Advani declared that the hand of some Islamist organisation was suspected. The investigating agencies took it as their cue to go in a certain direction even if evidence pointed to another direction. They arrested innocent persons, got a written confession, and booked them under POTA-like laws. We have seen courts pronouncing many such persons innocent after years of trial.

The Samjhauta Express blast, the Malegaon blasts and the Mecca Masjid blasts were all reportedly planned and executed by Hindu nationalist forces. But when their acts were exposed, the saffron forces began feeling the heat. Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde, who said the BJP and the RSS promoted Hindu terrorism through their training camps, has only reiterated what P. Chidambaram said a couple of years ago.

Ahamad Fuad,

Kochi

Leaders of the BJP and the RSS have routinely used the phrase ‘Islamic terrorism’ and held an entire community responsible for the actions of a few. If that has not insulted nationalists and patriots, how can Mr. Shinde’s allegations insult them?

The involvement of Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur and Shrikant Purohit in the Malegaon blasts and the Samjhauta Express blasts is public knowledge. The Minister need not apologise for what he said.

Baikadi Suryanarayana Rao,

Bangalore

One is unable to understand what prompted Mr. Shinde to make such an insensitive remark through the media. He has committed a Himalayan blunder by making the matter public, before his Ministry could do the ground work and take stern measures against the BJP and the RSS — if the report about their inciting terror is true. But that does not seem to be the case.

It is evident that the Congress high command is gradually losing its grip over its leaders. With elections round the corner, the Congress should take stock of the situation and prevent its leaders, irrespective of their rank, from making damaging statements which will dent the party’s image.

M.A. Madhusudan,

Bangalore

If Mr. Shinde indeed had definite proof, what was he waiting for? What prevented him from taking appropriate action under the law to close down “training camps that spread terror?”

D.V. Raghavan,

Bangalore

If the RSS and the BJP are running camps that promote terrorism, what is Mr. Shinde doing about them as Home Minister? His statement has given external terror organisers a shot in the arm. Their activity of brainwashing young men will gain credibility as the “Hindu terror” observation has come from India’s Home Minister himself.

S. Ramesh,

Bangalore

Mr. Shinde’s claim has come in handy for Hafiz Saeed, Jamat-ud-Dawah’s chief, to target India. Echoing Mr. Shinde’s candid observation on Hindu terrorism, Saeed has gone a step forward saying it has always existed in India.

K.S. Padmanabha,

Secunderabad

Just because Hafiz Saeed also has issued a statement against the RSS, the credibility of the Home Minister’s words about Hindu terror does not stand diminished. It is well known that saffron terrorism, like other forms of terrorism, is also a challenge faced by India. But New Delhi should remind people like Saeed that it is our internal matter.

K. Muhammed Ismayil,

Kozhikode

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