BJP starts march to Jammu and Kashmir

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

LAKHANPUR - Hundreds of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) activists Tuesday started marching towards Jammu and Kashmir from Punjab, ignoring the Jammu and Kashmir government’s crackdown and strict security measures to stop them.

The marchers assembled at the southern end of Lakhanpur bridge, which is on the Punjab side. The marchers were carrying the national flag in their hands and shouting slogans: “Bharat Mata ki jai”.

The march was led by the BJP’s youth wing Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha president Anurag Thakur. Senior BJP leader Sushma Swaraj was among the marchers.

The Jammu and Kashmir government has barricaded the bridge on its side of the Lakhanpur border and put up banners asking the marchers not to venture to their side as the gathering has been declared as “illegal” and any defiance would be met with force.

A helicopter carrying state Director General of Police Kuldeep Khoda and other senior police officers was hovering over the bridge.

Chief Minister Omar Abdullah briefed Governor N.N. Vohra about the steps taken by his government to stop the BJP’s ‘Ekta Yatra’ into the state and the reasons behind that.

The chief minister had a nearly hour-long meeting with the governor, according to informed sources.

The meeting took place against the backdrop of the state government’s crackdown on BJP which is leading a march aimed at hoisting the national flag in Lal Chowk in Srinagar on Republic Day Wednesday. The government Monday night sent back three top BJP leaders — Arun Jaitley, Sushma Swaraj and Ananth Kumar — to Punjab after taking them into custody at Jammu airport.

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