Masood Azhar's arrest: Guarded response from political parties

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New Delhi, Jan 13: The arrest of Jaish-e-Mohammad chief Maulana Masood Azhar by Pakistan today evoked a guarded response from both BJP and Congress, while Shiv Sena remained unimpressed with the action and described it as their "usual game" of arresting and then letting them off later.

While BJP termed Masood's arrest as a "positive step" which was "good" for peace-loving and development-oriented people of India and Pakistan, Congress gave partial kudos to Pakistan but sought concrete action through his prosecution and conviction.

Masood arrest: How pol parties reacted

"If the media reports of the arrest (Azhar's) is correct, then it is a positive step which is good a thing for the peace-loving and development-oriented people of the two countries," BJP national secretary and its media cell in-charge Shrikant Sharma said.

"If Pakistan acts against terrorism then it is good for the people of both countries because terrorists are enemies of the humanity.

The whole world today is united in rooting out terrorism," he said, adding that Prime Minister Marendra Modi had conveyed the "nation's anger" to his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif who had assured him of action.

Congress spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi said, "Partial kudos to Pakistan for detaining Azhar; proof of pudding is in whether there is arrest, sustained and genuine prosecution and conviction."

He also said, "Pakistan leadership especially Nawaz Sharif deserves benefit of doubt for a few weeks and if he walks the talk consistently in future he would go down as a statesman."

Singhvi added, "If Pakistan initiative proves sincere, genuine and long term and I am still skeptical that Pakistan has not diminished but enhanced itself by bowing to India." NDA's ally Shiv Sena was not much impressed with the action, saying it is just usual for Pakistan to take such actions for the sake of it following terror incidents in India.

Sena leader Sanjay Raut said, "It is the usual game being played by Pakistan of detaining some people, arresting them and then releasing them and later letting them off.

It had also happened after the 26/11 Mumbai terror strikes. We do not take the development seriously."

JD-U's K C Tyagi welcomed this step of Pakistan and said India had submitted dossiers against terror outfits operating from their soil in past many times including after the 26/11 attack and the attack on Indian Parliament.

"We are happy that Pakistan government has taken any positive step for the first time. Such action serve to improve the atmosphere for talks. After the action there is now a good atmosphere for talks. We also hope that the participation between the two countries will also increase in other fields like art, culture and sports," he said.

PTI 

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