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Our fight is against terrorists, not Kashmiris: Modi

Last updated on: February 23, 2019 20:10 IST

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday said India’s fight is against terrorism and not against the Kashmiris even as he vowed again to settle the score with Pakistan over the Pulwama attack.

IMAGE: At the Tonk rally, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that the security forces have been given full freedom to retaliate. Photograph: PTI Photo

Have faith in the army and in the Modi government, he said here at a rally in Rajasthan’s Tonk where he also seemed to refer to the reported harassment of Kashmiris after the car bomb attack that killed 40 Central Reserve Police Force jawans.

Modi accused Imran Khan of not living up to the assertions he made soon after becoming Pakistan’s prime minister, and also indirectly charged the Congress-led government in 2008 of not acting against that country after the Mumbai terror attack.

He referred to the mood of “veer ras” (bravery and heroism) in the country after the Pulwama attack, particularly mentioning social media.

“But our fight is against terrorism, against the enemies of humanity. Our fight is for Kashmir, not against Kashmir, not against the Kashmiris,” he added.

He said the Kashmiri youths are also troubled by terrorism and are ready to fight against them. “We need to keep them with us.”

He said the Kashmiri people take care of Amarnath pilgrims.

“A year back, there was firing on Amarnath pilgrims and Kashmiri Muslim people had lined up for donating blood and to protect lives,” he said.

“If we want to win the fight, we should not make mistakes. A terrorist is a terrorist and the Kashmiri people are also facing trouble due to terrorism,” he said, accusing the previous governments of not fulfilling their aspirations.

WATCH: Modi denounces attacks against Kashmiri students

The prime minister reiterated that the security forces have been given “complete freedom” (to retaliate).

“Have faith in our soldiers deployed on the border, in the Modi government and on Maa Bhawani’s blessings,” he said.

“The scores will be settled this time, settled for good (Iss baar hisaab hoga, hisaab poora hoga),” he said.

In an apparent reference to Pakistan, Modi said peace in the world is not possible if the “terror factory” continues like this.

“There is consensus in the entire world against terrorism. We are moving ahead with strength to punish the perpetrators of terrorism,” he said.

“Stern action against those who live in India and encourage separatism has been taken and will be taken. This is a changed India, this pain will not be tolerated,” he said.

“We will not sit quiet after suffering this pain. We know how to crush terrorism,” he said.

Modi recalled his conversation with Imran Khan during a congratulatory call after the cricketer-turned-politician became Pakistan’s premier.

The prime minister said he told Imran Khan that there had been enough battles between the two countries, in which Pakistan got nothing while India won each time.

“I told him let us fight against poverty and illiteracy,” Modi said, suggesting that Khan gave his word as a Pathan but went back on it.

Modi said he feels sad about “a handful of people who live in India and speak the language of Pakistan”.

He said incidents like the Pulwama attack give strength to those who chant ‘Bharat tere tukde honge’, referring to slogans calling for the breakup of the country.

He said these are the people who go to Pakistan, saying “do anything but remove Modi”.

“They are those who failed to show courage against the perpetrators of the Mumbai terror attack,” he said, without naming anyone.

Attacking the Congress, he claimed that it had failed to fulfil its promise of waiving farm loans after coming to power in Rajasthan.

Listing the achievements of his government, the prime minister gave a new slogan, suggesting everything is possible under his government -- “Modi hai to mumkin hai”.

He said that the previous dispensation would only discuss work, but his government completed it.

The prime minister said the one rank, one pension scheme for retired soldiers remained on the backburner for 40 years, but his government implemented it.

Shedding tears on the deaths of soldiers doesn’t befit those who could not implement the scheme, he added.

Omar thanks PM Modi for speaking against attacks on Kashmiris  

National Conference leader Omar Abdullah on Saturday thanked Prime Minister Narendra Modi for breaking his silence on attacks against Kashmiris in the aftermath of the Pulwama attack and expressed hope that such incidents would not recur.

“Thank you @narendramodi Sahib. Aaj aap ne hamaray dil ki baat keh di (you have conveyed the feelings of our heart),” Abdullah tweeted.           

“It’s been a more than a week since the terrible attack in Pulwama & more than a week that Kashmiris have been bearing the brunt of the public anger. Perhaps finally after PM @narendramodi Sb has spoken these forces targeting Kashmiris will stop in their tracks,” the NC leader said. 

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