Terror a weapon of weak, not brave nations: Rajnath
The Home Minister was addressing a gathering of families of martyrs in the border district of Kathua in Jammu region of the state to pay homage to the martyrs.
In a direct reference to Pakistan, Rajnath Singh said: "Terrorism is a weapon used by the weak and coward people. Brave nations do not use terrorism to settle scores with its neighbours.
"Pakistan has failed in four wars to divide India and now it was trying to divide India by using the religion card. Muslims are part of India as much as the followers of any other religion living here."
He further said: "There are 72 schools of thought in Islam and no other country except India has Muslims followers of all the 72 schools of thought.
"Pakistan cannot divide India on the basis of religion. ISIS was not able to establish itself in India and the credit for this goes entirely to Indian Muslims."
He said India had been divided in 1947 on the basis of religion, but that will never ever happen again.
"Pakistan was created on the basis of religion in 1947 and was still divided into two parts in 1971. I am afraid, if Pakistan does not change its attitude, it will be divided 10 times again."
"India is the country that has always sent out a powerful message of universal brotherhood to the world and that message is more relevant today than ever in the past," Singh asserted.
He said even after the Kargil conflict, the then Prime Minister, Atal Bihari Vajpayee went to Pakistan, but Pakistan has not changed.
"They continue to violate the ceasefire agreement. Officers of the Pakistan Rangers met me and I told them that the Indian forces will never fire first at a civilian of Pakistan.
"But, I also told them, if your forces target our civilians, then I have told our troops not to count bullets fired by them after that," he said, adding that "we do want to destabilise Pakistan because it has once been part of our large family".
Nawaz Sharif was invited to attend oath ceremony of the Modi government not just for a handshake, but to join hearts and minds of the two countries, Rajnath said.
"Prime Minister Modi did not care for protocol and he landed in Pakistan to facilitate Nawaz Sharif. But our large heartedness was returned by Pakistan through terror attacks in Pathankot, Uri and Nagrota.
"Our troops have proved to Pakistan that once we mean business, we can strike inside their own territory."
When India says that it will not negotiate with terrorism, why does not Pakistan say so, he asked.
"India is ready to cooperate with Pakistan to fight terrorism, but Pakistan is not interested in doing that," the home minister said.
He assured the border residents that whatever needs to be done to better their lot will be done.-