Get tough on ULFA

The terrorist outfit must be made to regret blowing its chance

Inviting insurgents for unconditional negotiations is quite useless if the Indian government is unwilling to take tough military action against those refuse to take up its offer. The time for polite conversation with ULFA is undoubtedly over, especially given its understanding of the term ‘unconditional talks’. Manmohan Singh’s government would do well to let the armed forces get on with their job until the ULFA humbly requests peace talks.

(ULFA chief) Paresh Barua, referring to a letter written by Singh’s office to Assamese writer and mediator Indira Goswami accepting her offer to mediate with the ULFA, said the government’s stand was contradictory and confusing.

“The prime minister’s letter on one hand said there will not be any pre-condition for talks, but on the other hand the letter says the prime minister will talk with the groups willing to abjure violence, which itself is a pre-condition,” Barua said.

“Under the circumstances, it is simply not possible for the ULFA to proceed further,” he said in statement e-mailed to reporters in Assam’s largest city Guwahati. [Reuters]