China’s move to lift the technical hold on the listing of Jaish-e-Mohammad chief Masood Azhar as a global terrorist comes in the midst of an election campaign focused on national security. And the BJP was quick to take credit for the development on Wednesday.
Terming it a “historic success for India in its fight against terrorism”, the BJP came out with posters with the party’s slogans — Modi Hai To Mumkin Hai and Desh Bole Modi Phir Se. The poster, bearing a picture of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, reminded that the JeM was behind the Pulwama attack.
“This chowkidar has not left any stone unturned in keeping the nation’s standing intact,” Modi said at a rally in Jaipur on Wednesday evening.
According to BJP leaders, the development will have a “massive impact”on the ongoing polls. In the three remaining phases, polling is to take place in Hindi heartland and border states, where “any action that is a setback to Pakistan would be cheered”, a senior BJP leader said.
The remaining three phases will see polling in Uttar Pradesh, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Delhi, Punjab, West Bengal and Haryana.
Senior leaders of the party gave credit to Prime Minister Modi for the development. “India stands vindicated. Masood Azhar is now a global terrorist. India is in safe hands. This marks a high point for the Prime Minister’s foreign policy,” senior BJP leader and Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley tweeted minutes after Beijing’s decision was announced.
Hailing the development, BJP president Amit Shah said, “I would like to congratulate our PM Narendra Modi on behalf of BJP and the people of India for it.” Shah, who was addressing a rally at Vasant Kunj in Delhi, added, “Since the BJP formed the government and Narendra Modi became PM, we defeated Pakistan everyday in the field of diplomacy.”
“There was a time when they used to spread terrorism and blamed us in the diplomatic field but since Narendra Modi has come, Pakistan has been left isolated and the whole world is standing with India,” he said.
Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh tweeted that India has been successful in getting Azhar designated as global terrorist after a decade of diplomatic efforts. “The credit for this success goes to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s strategic skills and the steps taken by him against terrorism,” he tweeted.
BJP general secretary Ram Madhav tweeted, “Relentless efforts by Indian officials finally bring d dreaded terrorist to justice. Several countries including France, UK, US took lead this time to finally get this decision at the UN. Let’s hope the Pak government will at least now act against this designated global terrorist.”
After the February 14 Pulwama attack and the February 26 Balakot airstrike brought national security to the centre of the political discourse, the BJP had redrawn its poll plan to ensure that “diplomacy gains” due to the government’s moves were part of the election narrative. In its campaign, the BJP has focused on its government’s efforts to “protect the nation”, its attempts to retaliate against the “enemy” and to “do justice to the martyrs.”
BJP leaders admitted that this has helped the party paper over the Opposition’s attack over the job situation and farmers’ issues.
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