The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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BJP terms Vajpayee peace push final effort

Chennai, Oct. 26: The BJP today said the Prime Minister’s dozen peace proposals to Pakistan were India’s “final effort” at ushering in lasting peace.

Party chief M. Venkaiah Naidu’s stand, made clear while interacting with reporters at the Chennai airport, is an iteration of defence minister George Fernandes’ remarks yesterday that the measures were part of India’s “last effort” to take Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s peace initiative to its logical end.

Naidu said the BJP expected Pakistan to respond positively to the proposals as these constituted Delhi’s “final effort for lasting Indo-Pak relations”. External affairs minister Yashwant Sinha had announced the proposals on Wednesday.

Naidu was categorical in his reassertion that Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India, in an apparent reference to Islamabad’s suggestion of a “composite dialogue” to resolve all disputes, including Kashmir.

There is no question of “giving away even an inch of land” in Jammu and Kashmir, the BJP chief said.

He underscored the Centre’s oft-repeated position that Pakistan should stop sponsoring cross-border terrorism, saying there is no place for it in any form of peaceful co-existence.

Naidu took the opportunity to urge states not to misuse the anti-terror legislation. Without naming Tamil Nadu, which has the largest number of cases booked under the law, he emphasised that states should use it only against terrorists and not against political opponents.

The Vishwa Hindu Parishad’s state unit said here in a press release that general secretary Praveen Togadia would visit Pasumponn village in Sivaganga district on October 30 to pay homage to freedom fighter Pasumponn Muthuramalinga Thevar at his memorial on Thevar Jayanthi day. Thevar was a disciple of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose. Togadia’s visit to Thevar Samadhi would perhaps be the first by a top VHP leader in recent years.

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