New Delhi, Apr 21 : Accusing Narendra Modi government of politicising the defence forces, Indian National Congress said on Sunday that its governments had always made national security a paramount issue and displayed zero tolerance for militancy.
Briefing mediapersons here at the AICC headquarters, senior party leaders P Chidambaram, Jairam Ramesh and Lt-Gen (retd) DS Hooda said Congress governments had authorised the defence forces to deal with Pakistan and cross-border militancy without any political intervention.
It was unfortunate that the present government had politicised national security , added the senior Congress leaders.
Mr Chidambaram and Mr Hooda said that the overall security policy should be focused on proper intervention on global issues, a safe neighbour, peaceful solution to internal problems, public safety and expansion of its capabilities. "At the same time, it is also necessary that we strengthen our security mechanism and military system too," they added.
The Congress alleged that in the past five years there had been a worrisome decline in the nation's military capacity and security system, and this is when political rhetoric on national security had reached new heights.
The former Union finance minister said the decline of overall security budget in GDP is the biggest example of this, and in 2019, it had reached the lowest level in 57 years.
Besides, ignoring the necessary preparations to deal with hazards, diplomatic failures had increased in the past five years, that had posed challenges to the nation's national security, he added.
There have been, Mr Chidambaram asserted, a considerable increase in cross border intrusions and ceasefire violations had gone up five times.
India, he said, had always supported world peace and harmony but it was only when the country demonstrates its ability to protect its national interests, it can be confident of peace.The tri-services, in the past five years, had, according to Mr Chidambaram, suffered a decline in 'modernisation budget' in the overall defence expenditure.
The veteran Congress leader also said that this time the real issues for the election were employment, agrarian distress besides others that required immediate attention.