New Delhi: While the opposition parties came down heavily on the Central Government for the killing of five Indian soldiers by Pakistani troops and terrorists along the Line of Control in Poonch sector of Jammu and Kashmir, the Union ministers too admitted that such incidents cast a shadow on the relations between the two neighbours.
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Shiv Sena demanded a strong reaction from the government, saying peace talks cannot go on when such attacks are taking place.
"Our soldiers are being sacrificed and there is a sense of sadness in the entire nation. We cannot sit here in peace. The government is sending peace doves. The government has to give a proper, justified explanation," said Syed Shahnawaz Hussain. His colleague Ravi Shankar Prasad, too, criticised the government's attitude.
"How many more brave lives need to be sacrificed? The government must deal with these matters sternly with the right attitude," said Prasad. Senior BJP leader Murli Manohar Joshi asked the government to not change its stance "until Pakistan had put an end to such terrorist acts".
Shiv Sena, an ally of BJP, said such attacks should be given a strong reply. "What are the ministers doing? These incidents happened earlier also. Such things are demoralising to Indian soldiers. Such attacks should be given a befitting reply," said Raut.
The Indian government called the attack unfortunate and said that relations with Pakistan cannot be normal under such circumstances. "This is very unfortunate. The Defence Minister is aware of the matter and he will definitely act according to the provisions," said Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Rajiv Shukla.
Minister of State for Home RPN Singh said the incident would definitely have an effect on Indo-Pak relations.
National Conference leader Farooq Abdullah asked Pakistan to put an end to attacks. "If Pakistan really wants friendly ties, we hope they will stop such activities. Otherwise there will come a time when Indian soldiers might not be able to show restraint. Friendship has to be built from both sides. It can't be a one-sided affair," he said.
Five Indian soldiers have been killed in a Pakistani attack on an Indian Army post along the Line of Control (LoC) in Poonch, Jammu and Kashmir. While four soldiers belonged to the 21st Battalion of the Bihar Regiment, one was from the Maratha Light Infantry Regiment. The martyred soldiers included a subedar and four jawans.