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LS concerned over Taliban decree
The Times of India News Service

NEW DELHI (March 1, 2001): The government assured concerned members of the Lok Sabha on Thursday that it would make all possible efforts to build an opinion against the Taliban's move to destroy ancient statues in Afghanistan.

Parliamentary affairs minister Pramod Mahajan told the Lok Sabha that the government was as concerned as the members were over the Taliban's latest decree and would do its best to see that it does not succeed in its effort.

Mahajan gave this assurance after several members, cutting across party lines, condemned the Taliban's diktat to demolish all statues in Afghanistan, including a famous Buddha statue and other relics at Bamiyan, and urged the government to take the lead in getting international support in this matter.

Raising the issue during Zero Hour, BJP member Vijay Kumar Malhotra condemned the Taliban's move, calling upon members to send out a strong message that such an action in the neighbouring country was ``unwarranted .

Malhotra was supported by CPM's Suresh Kurup who said the Taliban decree was a direct attack on the sentiments of a vast Asian population. India should take the initiative in stopping the destruction of ancient heritage relics, he said. Congress member Ramesh Chennithala also expressed concern over this move, while urging India to take the issue seriously.


Updated: 3-3-2001

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