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Panelists feel that the government must adopt a strategy that kills terrorism from its roots

Pulwama terror attack mastermind Kamran has been killed by the security forces in a fresh encounter. According to reports, Kamran was cornered by security forces along with two more terrorists in an encounter on Monday. APN’s popular debate Mudda discussed the issue. Anchorperson Akshay Singh posed the questions to panelists, including the Congress’s Ajay Verma, BJP’s Manish Singh, Kashmir expert Romesh Raina, foreign affairs expert Dr Sukramal Dutta and defence expert Lt Gen AK Bakshi.

Bakshi said: “The battle has started. Stone-pelters also need to be shown a tough posture.”

Dutta said: “Let’s make note of it that today four jawans have been killed, which is sad news. We need to win this battle. The Pulwama incident shows the militants are frustrated and can go to any length. Stone-pelters are potential militants, and need to be taught a lesson, they should not be spared. Stone-pelters act as shield to the main militants, so AK 47 should be used against them as well.”

Raina said: “Counter-terrorism operations is simply a war on terrorism. If we speak like this, a strong psychological message goes across. Passive terrorists like stone-pelters and information givers should be given a strong message. Stone-pelting is not new.  Stone is an important instrument of terrorism. Number two, our jawans need protection as well. The country owes it to them to make them feel secure.”

Singh said: “Today the nation is speaking in one voice. The attack shows the militants’ frustration. Modi ji’s government has sent a strong message to terrorists. Action against Pakistan, like that of scrapping the MFN etc, shows that Modi is acting tough.”

Bakshi said: “Political pressures have always interfered in army role. See the attack right now, how a car rammed and killed jawans. Last year in April, I was there where this attack happened. The coordination of operations have been poor, let’s make note of that. Of course, our strategy has been lacking. We don’t have a retribution policy in place. This strong posture should not be confined to a week only.”

Dutta said: “The Supreme Court has said that if a stone is used with an agenda of murdering someone, it should be taken like that as a weapon. This is significant. Even Supreme Court is saying that this is not a small matter. At the local level, security lapse has been there, there must been informers.”

Raina said: “Kashmir used to have Sufi Islam that accommodates minorities. However, now nearly 125 schools are being run by the Al Hadid faith. We need to check its spread. They carry an anti-India psyche.”

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Verma said: “Congress has always been saying that a sound policy should have been adopted for Kashmir. Pulwama incident should never have happened. We are questioning the government’s policies and intentions. MFN status for Pak should have been scrapped long time ago. Why do we wait for incidents like Pulwama to happen? Is this what 56-Inch chest is like? We can discuss GST and note ban, we don’t have time to discuss Kashmir?”

Bakshi said: “In this battle, our strategy should be to break the will of the perpetrators of terrorism. Water treaties should be abrogated, funds should be cut off to attack the issue at the root.”

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Dutta said: “US and Russia have said that they will stand by India’s right to self-defence. Even UK has indicated like that. Finally the battle is in the international sphere. China should be told that backing Pakistan will affect its trade ties with India.”

Verma said: “When US was attacked, US went into Pak to kill the main accused. The entire nation is together in the fight against terrorism. All over world, the stand against terrorism is clear. Scrapping MFN status is not the solution alone.”

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Bakshi said: “We need to evolve a clear-cut strategy.”

Dutta said:”Pak can never be a friend to India. Its entire foreign policy is anti-India. We need to take this into our perspective while deciding our strategy.”

Compiled by- Niti Singh Bhandari 

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