D. Raja for all-party meeting ahead of next action against Pak

New Delhi, Jan. 16 (ANI): Communist Party of India (CPI) lawmaker D. Raja on Wednesday asked Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh to call an all-party meeting and take all political outfits into confidence in dealing with Pakistan on the sensitive issue of repeated ceasefire violations along the Line of Control (LoC).

Raja said: "There are several statements made by Pakistani leaders as well as Indian leaders on the issue. The Prime Minister, the opposition party leaders and the Army Chief; they are making different statements. And, the National Security Advisor went and met the leaders of principal opposition party after the Prime Minister made a statement. I think the tension at the Indo-Pak border should in no way be escalated."

"Both countries must maintain restraint. Both countries must take all steps to resume the composite dialogue process, which was initiated. What happened at the border, how our two jawans were killed in a brutal way is highly condemnable, highly deplorable. But this incident should not derail the entire peace process, our efforts to normalise relations between India and Pakistan," he added.

"In the emerging situation, I think the Prime Minister should convene an all-party meeting and explain the ground situation, what actually happened at the border? And how the Government of India is assessing the situation? How the Government of India is contemplating to move further? All these questions will have to be shared, because after all, we are a democracy, we are not like Pakistan," said Raja.

"Many things are happening in Pakistan. At present, I understand there is a political turmoil in Pakistan. But India is a democracy, and it is not enough the National Security Advisor going and talking to the leaders of principal opposition party alone. There is a need for the Prime Minister to brief to all the parties in the country and take all the parties into confidence while dealing with Pakistan on such a sensitive issue," he added.

Meanwhile, Pakistan's Foreign Minister Hina Rabbani Khar has accused India of 'warmongering'.

Speaking at the Asia Society in New York, Khar said that her country is committed to getting relations with India back to normal and that the two neighbours cannot afford a setback to the progress made to improving ties over the past year.

The Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, yesterday termed as 'barbaric' the brutal killing of Indian jawans along the Line of Control (LoC), and said there cannot be business as usual with Islamabad.

Dr. Singh, who broke his silence on the prevailing tension with Pakistan on the LoC, said the attack on the Indian jawans is unacceptable.

"After this barbaric act, there cannot be business as usual with Pakistan. Pakistan must be held accountable for what happened on the LoC. Hope Pakistan will bring the perpetrators of the beheading to justice. The future peace process depends on Pakistan," he said.

Tension between the two Asian neighbours has escalated ever since Lance Naik Hemraj was beheaded in an attack by Pakistani troops along the Line of Control on January 8.

India has lodged a strong protest against the ceasefire violations by Pakistan along the LoC and made it clear to it that the Army reserves the right to retaliate if provoked.

The army's position was conveyed at a brigadier-level flag meeting between the two sides at Chakan-Da-Bagh crossing-point in Poonch sector of the Jammu region on Monday.

Pakistan has denied India's claim that its troops crossed the Line of Control to ambush a patrol party in the Mendhar sector in Poonch district. (ANI)


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