New Delhi: There can be no leniency towards terrorism and a terrorist should be treated like a terrorist, Union minister Jitendra Singh said yesterday.
The Minister of State in the Prime Minister's Office also said a majority of the youth in Kashmir were part of the mainstream development journey of India led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and do not wish to be deprived of the enormous opportunities being availed by their peers across the country.
"At the same time, a keen endeavour is continuously going on to bring back into mainstream, a few of the youth who have gone astray. But, there can be no leniency or premium on terrorism and a terrorist is to be treated like a terrorist," he told reporters while responding to queries about new Hurriyat chief Mohammad Ashraf Sehrai's refusal to dissuade his son from joining the Hizbul Mujahideen militant group in Kashmir.
Lauding the role of the security forces in Kashmir, he said, even while following the policy of hot pursuit against terrorists and Pakistan-sponsored militancy, the security personnel were constantly striving to motivate the local youth not to fall prey to false propaganda or allurement to join militant ranks.
The majority of the Kashmir youth today have already become an essential part of New India's growth story, Mr Singh said.
He said this was evident from the fact that invariably every year there has been a topper in civil services from most terror-affected districts of the Kashmir Valley.
Similarly, nearly 20 young boys and girls from the Valley had cleared the prestigious IIT/JEE exams last year, the minister said.