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Save the country from another partition: Advani
April 07, 2006 11:07 IST
Last Updated: April 07, 2006 13:11 IST
Criticising the 'minority appeasement policies' of the central government, senior Bharatiya Janata Party leader Lal Kishenchand Advani on Friday said the main objective of his National Integration Yatra was to make people aware of the 'impending dangers' of such policies and to 'save the country from another partition'.
Citing the example of President A P J Abdul Kalam while addressing a public rally in Ahmedabad, Advani said, "Even without any reservation, there are equal opportunities for everyone in this country."
He criticised the Centre for ordering a Muslim headcount in the armed forces, and said: "Such exercises will harm Muslims; not benefit them."
Advani said former home minister Sardar Patel had suggested that reservations should only be for the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes and not be based on religion.
The then prime minister Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru had also agreed to Patel's contention, he added.
The idea of carrying such a census had its roots in a book titled Khaki and ethnic violence in India, written by a US citizen of Indian origin, he said, adding, "If India is secular, why does it not reflect in the Army?"
Meanwhile, Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi criticised the Centre for repealing the Prevention of Terrorism Act and said it has taken away a good weapon from the law enforcement machinery.
Referring to the Justice Bannerjee Report, which was constituted by the railway ministry to probe the Gujarat riots, Modi said it was meant to protect the conspirators of the carnage.
Advani also criticised the statements of Congress chief Sonia Gandhi and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on illegal migration from Bangladesh to Assam as "dishonest, misleading and hypocritical pronouncements".
Advani said, "If Gandhi says that there can be no compromise on the issue of illegal foreigners in Assam, I would like to ask her and Singh, what steps have been taken to show that there is no compromise?"
Advani said he wanted to know whether the issue was raised during the two leaders' meetings with Bangladesh Prime Minister Khaleda Zia.
He also alleged that the amendment in Foreigners' (Tribunal) Order was an attempt to provide another legal protection to Bangladeshi infiltrators, after the Supreme Court scrapped the Illegal Migration (Determination by Tribunal) Act.
He further expressed that, "Assam is facing external aggression and the nation is facing the threat of another partition due to illegal immigration."
When asked what the National Democratic Alliance government had done to confront the issue, he said, "We faced opposition from the state government to deal effectively with the issue."
Speaking on the NDA's actions to stop terrorist activities in the country, he said they used to bust 50 to 60 ISI modules in the country every year while in 2005 the present government had busted just 15 modules.
He evaded comment on the BJP's stand on the government's proposal on reservations in educational institutions.