The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Friday said that former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee-led NDA Government had in 1999 consulted all political parties while handling the Air India Flight IC-814 hijack episode, adding that decisions taken were taken in the interest of the nation.
"There are questions being raised about Kandahar hijack incident. Maybe the memory of our Congress friends has become weak. We would like to remind them that the then government had consulted with every political party. The consultations had taken place at the highest level. It was a national crisis and everyone was kept in the loop," BJP spokesperson M J Akbar told mediapersons here today.
"Whatever decision the then government took was in the interest of the nation, it was in the interest of the people of the nation. It was taken after a lot of thought and everyone was kept informed," he added.
Congress' accusation came after former Research and Analysis Wing (RAW) chief A.S. Dulat stated in an interview that the Crisis Management Group (CMG) had 'goofed up' the operation during the handling of IC-814 hijacking. He stated that the hijackers gained an upper hand once the plane flew out of India.
In 1999, IC-814, which was en route from Kathmandu to New Delhi, was hijacked by terrorist group Harkat-ul-Mujahideen and taken to Kandahar in Afghanistan.
The crisis lasted for seven days and ended after India agreed to release three militants - Mushtaq Ahmed Zargar, Ahmed Omar Saeed Sheikh and Maulana Masood Azhar.