The Congress is distraught at Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) chief Masood Azhar being declared a global terrorist, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said. Addressing an election rally at Hindaun City, Rajasthan, on Friday, he said the Congress, instead of celebrating the decision of the United Nations designating the JeM chief [as global terrorist], was questioning its timing. “Should the UN ask the Congress, should it consult ‘madam’ or ‘naamdar’ before declaring him a global terrorist,” he said in a mocking reference to UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and Congress president Rahul Gandhi.
He said the world was talking about India. “India’s biggest enemy, Masood Azhar, who had been wounding India for several years, was declared an international terrorist two days ago,” he said, adding that the UN declaring the JeM chief was the third surgical strike on Pakistan. “Have I dealt with Pakistan’s arrogance or not,” he asked.
The PM’s statement comes a day after former PM Manmohan Singh had stated that there were surgical strikes during UPA’s regime too. Dr Singh had said that the strikes were only for strategic deterrence. He had stated that the government then had not used the strikes for political mileage.
PM Modi said over ₹1,000 crore has been released in advance for the states affected by cyclone Fani. The government was with the people in times of crises. A detailed review meeting was held and he had been given the latest updates on Fani, Mr Modi said as the ‘extremely severe’ cyclonic storm hit Odisha on Friday.
“Lakhs of families are affected by the cyclone in the coastal areas of Odisha, West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Puducherry and the Centre is in touch with the state governments. I got the latest update from officers sometime ago and also held a detailed review meeting yesterday. More than ₹1,000 crore have been released in advance,” he said.
The National Disaster Response Force (NDRF), the Indian Coast Guard, the Navy and the Army were engaged in the relief works, he pointed out. “I want to assure the people of the cyclone-affected States that the entire country and the Centre are standing by the affected families and the State governments,” he said.
(With inputs from agencies)