The Centre’s Narendra Modi government has decided to oppose the bill in Rajya Sabha, aimed at declaring Pakistan a terrorist state.
The Home Ministry, according to report by The Hindu has written to the Parliament Secretariat opposing the Bill since it jeopardises international relations under the Geneva Convention.
“We have diplomatic relations with the neighbouring country which includes High Commissions as well as trade relations. It will be not prudent to declare any country as a terror state as India is bound by international norms,”a senior government official was quoted in the report.
Against the backdrop of repeated terror attacks originating from Pakistan, an NDA MP Rajeev Chandrasekhar on 3 February had moved in Rajya Sabha a Private Members’ Bill. The bill sought to declare any such country as State sponsor of terrorism and provides for snapping all economic and trade relations with that nation.
While moving for consideration ‘The Declaration of Countries as Sponsor of Terrorism Bill, 2016’, Chandrasekhar had said it “seeks to call out states like Pakistan that continue to associate, promote, patronise and sponsor terrorism against our nation,”
Aside from being an NDA backed Rajya Sabha MP, Chandrasekhar is also a business partner in the media venture of Arnab Goswami, another pro-BJP journalist.
The Bill seeks to declare any country as state sponsor of terrorism and provides for withdrawing economic and trade relations with such a country and creating legal, economic and travel sanctions for citizens of that country and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto.
“For decades, India and other countries in the region have been victims of terror attacks from organisations and individuals based in and with the support of elements in Pakistan. Yet for decades we have remained engaged with Pakistan in an attempt to draw it into the mainstream.
“This Bill is to finally put into motion the process of calling terror sponsors to account,” Chandrasekhar said.
Quoting data, he said from 1998 to 29, January 2017 14,741 civilians have been killed in terror attacks in this country, 6,274 security force personnel lost their lives and we have 23,146 terrorists.
He also referred to the terror attack on Parliament, the Indian ‘temple of democracy’ on December 13, 2001 to press his point.
Noting that “Pakistan’s history and track record of fostering terrorism and terrorists is long and indeed distinguishable and incontrovertible”, he said, “It is time that we stop running to other countries to declare Pakistan a terror state amd stood up and did this job ourselves.”
Asserting that the world is getting tired and has lost patience with rogue nations, he said as the global opinion consolidates around the conduct of some countries like Pakistan, the focus will naturally come on what India and the Indian Parliament’s approach to that threat is
Chandrashekhar said the Bill can apply in the future also to other countries that directly or indirectly aid terror attacks against India.
Initiating a discussion on the bill, Anana Bhaskar Rapolu (Congress) said it is a great, detailed nill that can be very seriously taken into government for further pursuance.