With the death toll of the Easter terror attacks in Sri Lanka having risen to 290 on Monday, the country declared a nationwide emergency.

Local arrests have been made and the government has requested foreign help to trace the foreign links of the National Thowheed Jamaath, a radical Islamist group that was reportedly named in a 9 April intelligence alert. According to a cabinet spokesperson, the terrorists had the backing of “an international network without which these attacks could not have succeeded". Few would be surprised if the trail led to remnants of the Islamic State, which is enfeebled but sadly still retains some influence.

While Colombo hunts for masterminds of the plot, politicians in India appear unable to resist the temptation to make electoral capital out of the event. They are using the tragedy to make claims of a superior ability to thwart terrorism.

For the ruling party, this fits in with a muscular stance on national security vis-à-vis Pakistan, a theme so crudely calibrated that even nuke rattling is now part of the rhetoric. Sure, the nation’s safety is a valid poll issue. But still, it’s best to leave Sri Lanka’s grief and India’s nuclear weapons out of the fray.