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‘Saffron terror’ behind bomb blasts: HM
New Delhi, Aug 25 (IANS):
Published on 25 Aug. 2010 11:31 PM IST
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Home Minister P. Chidambaram Wednesday said a new phenomenon of “saffron terrorism” was behind several bomb blasts, prompting the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to accuse the government of trying to divert attention from its failures.
Chidambaram, while inaugurating a conference of chiefs of police forces of the country, said: “There is no let up in the attempts to radicalise young men and women in India. “Besides, there is the recently uncovered phenomenon of saffron terrorism that has been implicated in many bomb blasts,” he said referring to Hindu radical outfits.
Reacting to the statement, BJP spokesperson Rajiv Pratap Rudy said: “The country is witnessing a lot of chaos. Chidambaram needs an excuse to divert the attention of the nation. “The government, led by Sonia Gandhi (United Progressive Alliance chairperson), Manmohan Singh and Chidambaram, has messed up on every front, whether it is international dialogue, disturbances in Kashmir, leftwing extremism or the Commonwealth Games.
“They are now trying to divert the attention of the nation,” he alleged. Stating that terrorism was not linked to any religion, Rudy accused the government of targeting Hindus. “Terrorism cannot be attached to any religion. Individuals may be terrorists,” he said. “By using the term ‘saffron terror’, he has directly targeted the Hindus. It is part of the government’s appeasement policy.”
The Home Minister expressed the hope that the government would be able to reach out to protesters in J&K soon to pull the state out of “the vicious cycle of stone-pelting”, but admitted that it would take several years to contain Maoist violence.
“I am afraid Jammu and Kashmir is now caught in a vicious cycle of stone pelting, lathicharge, teargassing and firing, leading to casualties and resulting in more stone pelting,” Chidambaram said in his inaugural address to a three-day meet of police chiefs of various states and security agencies. “We are concerned that we have not been able to stop the vicious cycle in which the state is caught,” said the home minister.
“The security forces, however, have been instructed to act with great restraint.”
Observing that the conflict with Maoists would be a long-drawn one, the home minister pointed out that “patience is the key” to resolution of the conflict.
“We made it clear (to the states in November 2009) that it would take several years before we were able to contain the CPI (Maoists) and roll back their offensive,” said Chidambaram.
“I think the people of India understand - even if the critics do not - that the conflict will be a long drawn one, that patience is the key, that mistakes will be made and the security forces need material and moral support to carry out their tasks,” said the home minister.
He regretted the fact that the Maoists had refused to respond to the central government’s call to abjure violence and begin talks.
“We have called upon the CPI (Maoists) to abjure violence and come for talks. I regret to say that there has been no direct and credible response to our offers of talks,” he added.

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