The Pakistan-based terrorist group Lashkar-e-Toiba today announced that it was shutting down. This announcement came in the wake of the anti-terrorism pledge taken by the Orissa Chief Minister, Union Minister Mani Shankar Aiyar and a host of religious leaders. Addressing a group of reporters at a hurriedly convened press conference, Mohammed Aftab, the LeT spokesperson, said that this action left his group completely stunned. "We did not see this coming," he said. "We can handle a military raid, air strikes, even cruise missiles, but this is too much. I mean, how can we defend against something as deadly as a..." -- he quickly emptied a glass of water before continuing, "an anti-terrorism pledge"? He went on to add that they were planning to take this up with the International Criminal Court, claiming that a serious violation of their human rights had been committed.
In related news, the president of the Confederation of Indian Industry announced that an anti-recession pledge would be taken by all its members on March 15. This news was greeted by an immediate 230 point spurt in the Sensex. The rally could not be sustained, however, when the traders realized that the American President, Mr Barack Obama, would not be taking the pledge owing to prior commitments on that day.