Congress has a give and take policy with the anti-nationals, separatists and terrorists. It gives protection to them when they are in trouble and takes their help in reaping political gains. Few months ago in Andhra Pradesh, operations against Naxalites were called off after its top brass had been cornered in the Nalamalla forests, on orders from Congress high command. In one stroke, the Government nullified so many months of concerted efforts of the police and other security forces.
Now, in a similar exercise, the Assam Congress government has allowed ULFA extremists to get away after they were encircled by the Army in the Tinsukia forests. Reports say that Army operations were called off after writer Indira Goswami who has been playing the ULFA emissary, Congress leader Veerappa Moily and Minister of State for Defence and Jorhat MP, B.K. Handique stepped in. Moily, according to a report in the Indian Express appealed to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Congress President Sonia Gandhi to intervene to force the Army to call off its operation against terrorists holed up in the Tinsukia hideouts. Operation Balwan has been on for a month in Assam. Reports said that ULFA was encircled and success was in sight when the operations were called off, facilitating the escape of 25 ULFA extremists to Myanmar. The ULFA has been conveying through the interlocutors that any talks should centre on sovereignty. An 11-member pro-ULFA People'sConsultative Group is scheduled to meet the National Security Adviser M.K. Narayanan in mid-October. The Bhutanese government, sometime ago had stopped several ULFA extremists entering its territory and handed them over to India. In encounters with Bhutanese army, several of them were killed. It also offered us support in the fight against terrorism.
The Assam government is eager for a settlement with the extremists with the State Assembly elections due early next year. After the Supreme Court struck down the IMDT Act, the extremist Muslim organisations in the State have joined hands to form a Muslim political outfit to contest the elections. This development is worrying the Congress.
The Congress won the last round of polls riding the communal bandwagon in Andhra Pradesh. The Congress managed its electoral gains promising to lift the ban on Naxalites. The ban was re-imposed last month after the Naxalites become unmanageable. The same is the case in Jammu and Kashmir. The Congress has no qualms in aligning with separatists for temporary political gains. Here the party is already talking of with-drawing the security forces and announcing unilateral ceasefire.
In pandering to vote banks the party would go to any extent, even of defying the judiciary. In Andhra, the High Court had stuck down the five per cent reservation for Muslims. Now the State Assembly has got the law amended to reverse the court order. A similar communal quota, making the Aligarh Muslim University, a wholly centrally funded institution ?a minority ghetto ?was quashed by the Allahabad High Court. The Congress central leadership is now talking of bringing a central legislation to overturn the court judgement. When it comes to Hindu sentiments as in the case of the ill-treatment of the Kanchi Shankaracharya by the Tamil Nadu government, the Congress refrain is that ?law will take its course?. The Congress will not interfere with the judiciary. Then why is it coming in the way of the rule of the law when it involves well-entrenched minority extremism? The party has always abetted separatist elements. The nation has not forgotten the shady games it played in Jammu and Kashmir, in Punjab by encouraging Bhindranwale, in Assam, in other North-Eastern states and even initially propping up LTTE. But the UPA is the limit. Its every action is dictated by narrow political considerations. It is in a tearing hurry to establish itself as an umbrella for all divisive, extra-constitutional interests wreaking havoc with our nationhood.