BJP irked because flag not hoisted at Srinagar’s Lal Chowk

Jammu, Jan 27 (Calcutta Tube) The Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP) Wednesday condemned the discontinuation of the two-decade-old practice of hoisting the national flag at the historic Lal Chowk in Srinagar on Republic Day.

BJP legislator Ashok Khajuria told IANS: ‘This shows the incapability of the government to stand firm before separatist forces.’

He charged the government of ‘bowing to the will of anti-national and separatist forces’.

Flag hoisting at the clock tower at Lal Chowk was started in 1991 by BJP leader Murli Manohar Joshi on Republic Day. Since then the paramilitary troopers posted in the area continued the practice.

But this time the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) did not do it saying ‘it was never a state function and the local commanders posted at Lal Chowk used to do it on their own’.

In the Kashmir Valley, the main parade was held at Srinagar’s Bakshi stadium which had been taken over by police and paramilitary forces three days ahead of the ceremony.

Peace prevailed amid a separatist sponsored shutdown though intelligence reports had suggested possible guerrilla strikes around Republic Day.

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