Disappointed that Azhar’s designation doesn’t mention Pulwama, JK: Cong

Disappointed that Azhar’s designation doesn’t mention Pulwama, JK: Cong

NEW DELHI: The Congress Wednesday welcomed the designation of JeM chief Masood Azhar as a global terrorist by the UN, but expressed disappointment that the listing “does not mention Pulwama and Jammu and Kashmir” while recounting his role in terror activities.
The Congress said it expected the Modi government to act with a “greater speed” in pursuing the case with China as several precious lives in attacks like Pulwama could have been avoided.
The Modi government should now push for a declaration of bounty on Azhar’s head as was ensured by the UPA in the case of Mumbai terror attack alleged mastermind Hafiz Saeed, the Congress said.
“Azhar’s “belated” declaration as a global terrorist by UN is surely a welcome step and India’s fight against terrorism is resolute and the entire nation is one in fighting the menace,” Congress’ chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala said in a statement.
Designation as a global terrorist is just the first step and all his sources of funding need to be stopped, he said.
The entire property and terror fund need to be taken over by international agencies, Surjewala said.
“We are disappointed that UN listing doesn’t mention Pulwama/J&K while listing Azhar’s role in terrorist activities,” he tweeted.
The Congress demanded that the Modi government should pursue a complete international ban on Jaish-e-Mohammad and also ensure that other terrorists of JeM are similarly blacklisted by the UN.
It also demanded that the Modi government should pursue the blacklisting of Pakistan as a terrorist state by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF).
“We expected Modi government to act at a greater speed in pursuing declaration of Masood Azhar, but after agenda-less visit of PM Modi to China (Wuhan Summit) they did not push for this case with China in the entire period of 2018,” Surjewala alleged.
“Several precious lives in terror attacks like Pulwama could have been avoided if Modi government had pushed international community, including China to agree, to declare Masood Azhar as international terrorist,” he said.
Surjewala alleged that history is dotted with BJP’s compromise of national security in tackling “terrorism”, which is reflected in actions like the release of Azhar, Mushtaq Ahmed Zargar and Ahmed Omar Saeed Sheikh in Kandahar, by previous NDA government.
“It is the same terrorist Masood Azhar who heads Jaish-e-Mohammad in Pakistan and fomented terror on Indian soil everyday. Congress party’s commitment to end terrorism is absolute,” he said.
“After the 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks, the UPA government’s response was to isolate and diplomatically expose Pakistan as a terror hub, besides rallying the international community for decisive action against terrorists,” he said.
Surjewala asserted that “Pakistan must be forced to dismantle the entire terror infrastructure of JeM, as also other terrorist outfits operating from its soil”.
“All wanted terrorists like Azhar, Hafiz Saeed, Dawood Ibrahim, Haji Mohammad Yahya Mujahid, Abdul Salaam and Zafar Iqbal thriving on Pakistani soil and involved in heinous terror attacks in India must be forthwith deported to India and brought to justice,” the Congress said.
Surjewala also listed the UPA government’s efforts in tackling “terrorism” and the steps it took against “terrorists”.
“Within 14 days of Mumbai attack, we got China to agree to declare Hafiz Saeed as a global terrorist under the 1267 Sanctions Committee of UN,” he said.
—PTI