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Not Hoisting Tricolour At Lal Chowk Encourages Terrorists: BJP

PTI 27 Jan 2010, 20:36:16 IST

The decision not to hoist the national flag at Lal Chowk in Srinagar on Republic Day on Wednesday drew flak from main opposition BJP, which said it would not only demoralise security forces but also encourage terrorists.

BJP spokesperson Prakash Javadekar said, "this is a meek surrender by the government before the separatist elements in the valley. More serious is the reason given for such a shameful decision that unfurling of the national flag would provoke separatists and extremists and is a needless provocation."

BJP said that by ordering the BSF and CRPF not to hoist the national tricolour at Lal Chowk, the government had broken a convention which began 19 years ago when in 1991, the then party president Murli Manohar Joshi had unfurled the flag there.

"Government's decision is demoralising for security forces and the Indian public. This decision must be seen against the backdrop of Hurriyat's practice of observing Bandh on 26th January every year," Javadekar said.

He recalled how BJP had organised a flag hoisting ceremony at Lal Chowk last year. "It is pertinent to note that last year, Kashmiri people participated in large numbers in flag hoisting ceremony at Lal Chowk," he said.

However, when asked why BJP did not hoist the flag this year, he evaded a direct reply. PTI