Prime Minister Narendra Modi's aggressive stance against Pakistan exporting terrorism to Indian soil has received strong support from the main opposition party Congress.
Congress may have its differences with the Modi government on several fronts, but it has openly lauded the successful surgical strike by the Indian Army against the terrorist bases across the Line of Control (LoC).
It’s quite similar to the support that the Congress had given to the statement made by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his Independence Day speech on Balochistan and Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.
Congress president Sonia Gandhi said on Thursday that the Congress stands with the government in its actions today to protect the country’s security and deal with the menace of terrorism from across the border.
"The Congress Party congratulates the armed forces on the success of the operation and offers its support to the government in our country's continuing battle against cross-border terrorism. This is a strong message that conveys our country's resolve to prevent further infiltration and attacks on our security forces and our people," said Gandhi.
In her statement, she said the Congress hopes that Pakistan would recognise that it bears a great responsibility in the continuing cross-border terrorist attacks against India.
"The party expects that Pakistan will take effective action to dismantle the infrastructure of terrorism that it has supported and it ensures that its territory and the territory under its control is not used for terrorist purposes against India," the Congress president added.
Former Defence minister and senior Congress leader, AK Anthony congratulated the government and Indian Army for the operation.
"I congratulate and salute the Indian Army for this action. It’s a logical action against terrorists and Pakistan should realise and stop sending terrorists across the border to India,” Anthony reportedly told ANI.
I salute bravery of Indian forces, this is a befitting reply to Pak. We support the Govt: Former Defence Minister AK Antony #SurgicalStrikes
— ANI (@ANI_news) September 29, 2016
The chief spokesperson of Congress Randeep Surjewala remarked, "Congress wholeheartedly supports the surgical strike on terror pads in PoK by Indian Army. We salute the valour of our armed forces."
However, this is not the first time that the Congress has supported Modi government’s decision. Prior to this, the Congress supported PM Modi’s remarks in his Independence Day speech on Balochistan and Pak-occupied Kashmir.
The PM in his speech from Delhi's Red Fort on 15 August made it clear that he has completely rerouted his policy on Pakistan, delivering an aggressive message by referring to the human rights abuses in Balochistan and PoK.
"India will be compelled to expose Islamabad's many wrongdoings in regions fighting terror and atrocities by its security forces," the PM had said.
In response, the Congress had then asked the government to raise the issue of Pakistan's human rights abuses in Balochistan and in PoK, both at the bilateral meetings with Islamabad and at international forums.
Even the Congress had distanced itself from the comment made by its senior leader Salman Khurshid, who had remarked, "PoK is our right. Our entitlement. We will support it. But by bringing in Balochistan, you are ruining our case."
"The Congress does not subscribe to the statement made by Salman Khurshid, who is a senior leader. He can have his own opinion. Our view is very, very clear. Congress party believes there are serious human rights violations in Balochistan and the voice of democratic dissent is being suppressed by Pakistani forces and agencies," the Congress party reportedly said after this, while supporting Modi’s statement.
Speaking to Firstpost, a senior Congress MP said, "Whenever it’s the issue of national security and integrity, Congress has always supported the cause, because the party strongly believes in it. And when it was in power at the Centre, it ensured that national security and integrity shouldn’t get compromised. Therefore, we supported PM Modi’s statement on Balochistan and PoK made on Independence Day, and didn’t subscribe to the statement made by our senior leader Salman Khurshid."