Congress, PDP condemn Pathankot attack

New Delhi, Jan 2 (IANS) The Congress and PDP have condemned the terrorist attack on the Indian Air Force (IAF) base at Pathankot in Punjab, saying it was an attempt to derail bilateral talks with Pakistan.

The Congress also urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to take stock of the security situation in the country to ensure terror attacks on Indian soil emanating from Pakistan do not recur.

“Strongly condemn terrorist attack on Pathankot Air Force base. My deepest condolences to families of the brave soldiers martyred in the attack,” Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi tweeted.

Peoples Democratic Party spokesperson Waheed Ur Rahman said: “It is an attempt to derail talks. Talks will defeat terror and violence. Talks will influence terror, terror cannot influence talk. We condemn all acts of terror and violence.”

Congress spokesperson Randeep Surjewala said: “Why has Punjab suddenly become the hotbed of terror activities in the last few months? The state has been calm for the last 20 years.”

“It’s indeed a very serious matter, as seven days after Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited Pakistan to meet his counterpart Nawaz Sharif, a terrorist module comes from Pakistan and attacks in Punjab and attacks our frontline security installation.

“Despite the prime minister’s visit to Pakistan, Inter-Services Intelligence continues to sustain and support terror activities against India. The current module appears to come from Pakistan in the same fashion,” he added.

The Congress leader said that terror camps run by terrorists in Pakistan-controlled Kashmir for anti-India activities continue to be supported by the Pakistani establishment.

“Our intelligence agency continue to issue generalised terror threats without giving any specifics, resulting in attacks where local police and security agencies are caught unawares. It’s a very serious matter of internal security,” Surjewala said.

“We urge the prime minister to take stock of the internal security situation to ensure that such repeated terror incidents coming from Pakistan on Indian soil do not happen again,” Surjewala added.

Another Congress leader Ashwani Kumar said: “This is a dastardly attack. It is a brazen attempt to destabilise the (India-Pakistan) border. The whole nation stands united to fight terror. We are all in support of the government to repel this attack.”

In a major security breach, terrorists entered an Indian Air Force base in Pathankot early on Saturday and engaged the security forces in a fierce gunfight.

Police sources said at least two IAF personnel were killed and four others injured in the attack that began around 3.30 a.m.

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