Mumbai: Raising concern over the deaths of jawans in incidents of cross-border firing, the Shiv Sena on Wednesday wondered how long will the country tolerate the attacks by Pakistani troops and terrorists.
At the same time, it lauded Army chief General Bipin Rawat’s warning of stronger reaction to Pakistan-supported terrorism and assertion that the force will not let anti-India activities succeed in Jammu and Kashmir.
The Sena claimed that without any war, over 1,600 personnel were killed in cross-border firing in the last 13 years which, it said, was a serious matter.
Seven Pakistani soldiers were killed on Monday in retaliatory firing by the Indian Army after a ceasefire violation in Jammu and Kashmir where an infiltration bid was also foiled with the elimination of five militants of Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammad.
The Sena said, “Though the Indian Army killed some insurgents on Army Day, it has also emerged that on every third day an Indian jawan is killed in cross-border firing."
“Hence, the real question arises that for how long we have to tolerate such an act of Pakistan?" it asked in an editorial in its mouthpiece ‘Saamana’.
“Without any war, the Indian Army has lost 1,684 jawans in the last 13 years. This information is serious because the jawans were killed in firing from Pakistan and terrorist activities," the Sena said.
It welcomed Army chief Rawat’s warning of initiating major strike if Pakistan failed to control cross-border activities. In the last few years, the Army has “killed many terrorists and Pakistani jawans as well", it noted.
The Sena also expressed concern over rising prices of petrol and diesel in the retail market. “We cannot control the global issues of the Middle East but we can control issues related to the common man, such as the price rise," said the junior alliance partner of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) at the Centre and in Maharashtra.
It said 2018 and 2019 are “election years in the country" and demanded that the government take some steps to keep the petrol and diesel prices on the lower side.