BJP for rethink on dialogue process

January 05, 2016 01:54 am | Updated November 17, 2021 02:21 am IST - NEW DELHI:

Despite support from the RSS for the NDA government’s recent pitch to engage Pakistan, there are distinct signs that the ruling BJP is recalibrating its political line as public concern over the Pathankot terror attack encounter rises.

A party insider signalled the shift, telling The Hindu that while the party was firmly with the government, the establishment would have to wait and watch on whether Pakistan cooperated with India in the coming days or went into denial mode as it did post the 26/11 attack on Mumbai. “It is too early to say anything as the encounter is still on. But the fact remains that Pakistan-based handlers and organisations were behind the Pathankot terror strike,” the BJP leader said.

The RSS, however, continued to back the government through the ongoing encounter, supporting Mr. Modi’s recent unscheduled visit to Lahore last month on his counterpart Nawaz Sharif’s birthday to signal a positive mood for engagement. The Sangh’s Akhil Bharatiya Prachar Pramukh (chief spokesperson) Manmohan Vaidya told The Hindu : “Terror must be dealt with firmly. But there is no need to suspend talks. Rather, it (terror) should also be discussed boldly and firmly.”

The ruling party seems mindful of the fact that as opposition, it had consistently maintained the position that talks and terror could not co-exist . What is politically crucial for it is mounting concern over the scale of the present attack.

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