JAMMU: Amid the escalating controversy over a state government order making attendance at Republic Day functions mandatory for state government employees, BJP general secretary on Sunday said any opposition to attending the events is unacceptable, as it is a matter of pride for every citizen.
The Jammu and Kashmir administration has made it mandatory for government employees to attend Republic Day functions at Srinagar and Jammu, warning that any failure will be “construed as dereliction of duty and disobedience of government instructions”.
“It is a matter of pride for every Indian. We all have to participate in the Republic day parade,” the senior BJP leader said in reply to a question on political parties, who have reportedly been critical of the order.
Hitting out at leaders in the Valley, who have allegedly voiced opposition to the order, the BJP leader said, “When in power, they say something and when out of it, they pander to separatist sentiments. Such leaders exist in parties based in the Kashmir Valley. This is an open secret as the whole country knows about it.”
Madhav added, “If some officers are opposing it, then it is surely a serious matter and I am sure the administration will take necessary action.”
The main Republic Day function in the state would be held in Jammu. Governor Satya Pal Malik, who is currently holding the administrative reins of the state, will preside over the function. In Kashmir, the main function would be held at the Sher-i-Kashmir cricket stadium in Srinagar.
The state has been in the grip of political instability since the time the BJP pulled out of the People’s Democratic Party-led government under Mehbooba Mufti. Later, Governor Satya Pal Malik dissolved the Assembly, plunging the Valley into an administrative crisis.
The governor has since had the administrative reins of the state. While many attempts have been made by political forces, including the PDP, Congress and the National Conference in the Valley to cobble up a coalition in the state and stake claim for the state, none has bore fruit.
(With agency inputs)