BJP, Cong spar over Sarabjit's death

BJP, Cong spar over Sarabjit's death

After effects: Opposition blames UPA for not taking effective diplomatic steps

BJP, Cong spar over Sarabjit's death

While politicians across the spectrum came together in condemning Pakistan for the killing of Sarabjit Singh, a war of words ensued between the Congress and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) over the role of their respective governments in the case.

The BJP accused the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance government of  “not taking effective diplomatic steps.”

The Congress made a counter allegation that the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government never made an effort to raise the issue with Pakistan.
The principle opposition party has now demanded scaling down of diplomatic ties with Pakistan.

 “Sarabjit’s murder is unfortunate. Had India taken effective diplomatic steps in the past, such an incident would not have taken place,” said BJP President Rajnath Singh.  
 He demanded the government to recall the Indian high commissioner to Pakistan.
 “The Indian High Commissioner to Pakistan should be called back and diplomatic relations should be scaled down till Pakistan gives full assurance that there will be no provocation or protection to any terror activities against India and full protection will be given to Indian prisoners in Pakistani jails,” Singh said. 

Lodge strong protest

He also wanted India to lodge a strong protest at the international forum against Pakistan.  Condemning the incident, BJP leader Sushma Swaraj tweeted: “It is a cold-blooded murder. This is not the way civilised nations behave.”

However, the Congress shot back: “The NDA has no right to make such charges. The BJP-led NDA government “never ever” took any stand on Sarabjit’s case during its regime.” Congress spokesperson Sandip Dikshit told reporters: “It was our government which first took up the matter with Pakistan. In 2005, the prime minister took up the case with the then president of Pakistan during the United Nations General Assembly. Our government had been making constant attempts to see that he gets justice or is sent back to India.”

Meanwhile, CPM leader Sitaram Yechury said: “Whatever is the judiciary’s decision, it was executed in an illegal way. Though the verdict was for death sentence, it seems, he was lynched by a mob.”

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