In the initial reactions coming to the Pathankot terrorist attack from political circles, the allies SAD-BJP have claimed that ‘their ties will not affect at any cost at the hands of terror.’
While Punjab BJP president, Kamal Sharma, has said that ‘visit of Prime Minister Narendra Modi is nowhere connected to Pathankot attack’, the Shiromani Akali Dal spokesperson Daljeet Singh Cheema and advisor to CM Maheshinder Singh Grewal claimed that ‘ties with BJP will only get stronger’.
Speaking to The Indian Express, Sharma said, “It is highly immature to connect Modi’s visit to Pakistan and today’s terror attack. There is simply no connection at all. Security arrangements and diplomatic ties can go hand in hand. However, BJP continues to be firm on its stand and terror will be dealt strongly at any cost.”
“Punjab shares a long border with Pakistan. Terrorism is trying to make a comeback in Punjab but we will not let that happen. BJP is well aware of the fact that it is for second time within months that Punjab has been made a target. Punjab has suffered before and we know how painful period that was. There is no question of strained ties with Akali Dal. We will fight terrorism together,” said Sharma.
Reacting to the Congress leader of opposition Charanjit Channi’s allegation that ‘Akali Dal should not ask Modi where is his 56-inch chest and zero tolerance for terror’, Sharma said, “If PM initiates peace talks with Pakistan, it does not mean that stand against terror has been softened. We are where we were before Lok Sabha polls and there will be no compromise on issue of terrorism.”
Meanwhile, Maheshinder Singh Grewal, advisor to CM Parkash Singh Badal compared the attack to the battle of Mahabharata and said that ‘good is winning over evil since ages’. “It is the work of anti-national forces who do not want peace at the borders. Akali Dal has fought against terrorism since day one and we have proved it with actions not words. There will zero tolerance towards terrorism but there is no question of straining ties with BJP. We will lead this fight together. This happened since ages, even during Mahabharata- victory was of good over evil at last. Efforts of Modi are in right direction and Akali Dal stands with him.”
SAD spokesperson and Education Minister, Daljeet Singh Cheema, also reiterated that ‘SAD and BJP ties will rather get stronger.’ “People from both countries want peace. PM is representative of people’s feelings and that is what he did visiting Pakistan. Pathankot attack is an attack on India not Punjab alone. SAD-BJP will lead this fight against terrorism in a united way. Terrorists want derailment of peace which we won’t let happen,” said Cheema.
Congress leader of opposition in Punjab Vidhan Sabha, Charanjit Channi, questioned Akali Dal over Modi’s ’56-inch chest’. “We salute the martyrs who have sacrificed their lives today but it was a complete intelligence failure, not once but twice. Badals needs to think that why Punjab is being targeted. He should ask BJP that where is 56-inch chest of PM Modi now who boasted of giving befitting reply to terror before Lok Sabha polls. He called Congress ‘weak’ but currently he is acting as sycophant of Nawaz Sharif while terrorists from Pakistan are killing our men,” said Channi.