BJP miffed over non-inclusion of terrorism in NIC agenda


New Delhi : The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Sunday questioned the government’s intentions in not including terrorism in the agenda of the National Integration Council (NIC) meeting starting here Monday.

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“It is unfortunate that terrorism is not included in the agenda of the NIC meeting. This is vote bank politics at its worst,” senior BJP leader Ravi Shankar Prasad told reporters here Sunday.

“This shows lack of seriousness on part of United Progressive Alliances (UPA) government in the fight against terrorism,” Prasad added.

“The protest of (Gujarat Chief Minister) Narendra Modi is absolutely right over absence of terrorism as an issue from the agenda of the NIC meeting,” he further said.

Modi, as also Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje, have written to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh asking why terrorism was not on the NIC’s agenda.

According to Prasad, terrorists are out to destroy and disintegrate the country. “What kind of national integration is this that the terrorism is not included as an issue?” he questioned.

Prasad said the BJP would raise this issue at the NIC meeting, to be chaired by the prime minister.

The agenda for the meeting includes social structure – caste & identity divisions and rhetoric; economic development – equitable development and removal of regional imbalances; promotion of feeling of security among minorities and other vulnerable sections; education – promotion of education among minorities, schedule castes and schedule tribes; communal harmony; other elements contributing to national integration; and extremism.

The NIC last met here in 2005.

The NIC includes central ministers, chief ministers of all states and union territories, leaders of national and regional political parties, chairpersons of national commissions, eminent public figures and representatives from business, labour, media and women.