Post-Uri, Indian soldiers glare harder at Pakistan Rangers at Attari
CHANDIGARH: The fallout of the attack on an Indian Army base at Uri in Kashmir has been felt on the Delhi-Lahore 'peace' bus, the Samjhauta Express between India and Pakistan and on the Beating the Retreat ceremony at the Attari-Wagah border between the two countries.
Fearing protests by Hindu groups in the aftermath of the attack, the Punjab Police on Tuesday diverted the Delhi-Lahore bus at Khanna, and increased the security cover for the Samjhauta Express at Attari.
And at the Attari-Wagah border, India's Border Security Force (BSF) personnel displayed more showy aggro during the Beating the Retreat ceremony, stomping and glaring harder at the Pakistani Rangers across the border.
Police sources in Amritsar said the bus to Lahore was diverted after it halted for breakfast at a floating restaurant near Fategarh Sahib as there was information that several Hindu groups were going to stage a protest at Khanna. Several The Punjab units of the Shiv Sena (Hindustan) and Shiv Sena (Azad) and the Jewellers Association of Khanna did mass their supporters at intersections in Khanna anticipating the bus.
Anticipating trouble, the bus was diverted to Ludhiana via Bassi Pathana and Khamanon and then back to its normal route to Jalandhar and Amritsar before reaching the Attari border and on to Pakistan.
Also, the number of Government Railway Police personnel deployed at the Attari railway station has been increased from 27 to 47 to protect the Samjhauta Express.
However, despite the Indo-Pakistan tension since the Uri attack, there has been no decrease in the number of passengers (150) on the twice-a-week train.
In Pathankot, a small town on the border with Jammu & Kashmir where an air base was attacked in January, security forces were set on high alert. The director general of Punjab for law and order), H S Dhillon held marathon meetings with Army and Air Force officers. Sources said there was heavy movement of security personnel around the Air Force station and Army establishments in the area. The Army has large bases surrounding Pathankot.
Meanwhile, a briefcase abandoned by a soldier near the ammunition depot at Simbal Chowk in Pathankot triggered panic. An Army uniform and the soldier's identity card were found in it. It was returned to him.