Prez lauds note ban, surgical strikes; favours joint polls
Lauding the demonetisation decision and the surgical strikes across Line of Control (LoC) as "bold" decisions in the interest of the country, President Pranab Mukherjee on Tuesday favoured a constructive debate on simultaneous elections to Lok Sabha and Assemblies and funding of polls to eradicate money power.
The Government, he said, is committed to combating the "grave challenge" of terrorism and to ensure that perpetrators of such acts are brought to justice.
In his address to the joint session of both the Houses of Parliament, marking the opening of the Budget session, Mukherjee spoke about a host of government schemes and initiatives covering aspects like housing, LPG connections, electrification, healthcare, education, farmers' welfare, welfare of the specially-abled, rural development and urban development.
When he referred to the demonetisation decision to fight blackmoney and corruption as also the surgical strikes across the LoC as "bold" decisions, there was thumping of desks by the members of the ruling alliance.
"My government has taken decisive steps to give a fitting reply to the repeated incursions on our territorial sovereignty," Mukherjee said.
"On 29th September 2016, our defence forces successfully conducted surgical strikes at several launch pads along the Line of Control to prevent infiltration by terrorists," he added.
The strikes were conducted in the wake of terror attack on army camp in Uri in Kashmir in which 17 soldiers were killed.
The mention about the surgical strikes in the President's address assumes significance as some quarters had questioned whether the action had actually taken place. There were also demands for showing proof in this regard.