BJP asks government to call off dialogue with Pakistan


New Delhi : Accusing the ruling coalition of “speaking in different voices” in the wake of the Mumbai terrorist attacks, India’s main opposition BJP has asked the government to marshal international support to “expose” Pakistan and call off the composite dialogue with it.

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“Not judging between strength and weakness, somewhere the grip seems to have loosened over the last few days. Our government seems to be speaking in different voices,” former external affairs minister and senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Yashwant Sinha told Karan Thapar in an interview for ‘Devil’s Advocate’ on CNN-IBN.

“We heard the external affairs minister (Pranab Mukherjee) say one thing, Defence minister (A.K. Antony) say another thing on the same day (on dealing with Pakistan). I think it will be better if there was unity and cohesion within the spokespersons of the government,” he added.

While Mukherjee Tuesday said India was keeping all its options open, Antony ruled out the military option against Pakistan.

Sinha also suggested that the government should intensify international pressure on Islamabad by sending high-level political emissaries to various countries, besides the US and Britain, with “incontrovertible” proof of the complicity of Pakistani elements in the Mumbai attacks.

The ministers should discuss more among themselves and “come to a clear conclusion”, he said, adding: “There is lack of cohesion in thinking.”

Sinha stressed that if his party were in power, it would have chosen to “call off the composite dialogue” rather than putting a “pause” as has been done by the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government.