J-K Govt Says Amarnath Yatra Won't Be Curtailed, Action Against Geelani as Per Law
SRINAGAR: A day after hardline separatist leader Syed Ali Geelani called for restricting Amarnath Yatra to 30 days, Jammu and Kashmir government on Saturday asserted that annual Hindu pilgrimage won’t be curtailed and action would be taken against Geelani as per law.
“Amarnath yatra will he held as scheduled and all facilities including security will be provided to the pilgrims,” Deputy Chief Minister Nirmal Singh told reporters in Jammu today.
He said the annual Amarnath yatra is managed by Shri Amarnath Shrine Board (SASB) and it follows all the traditions under the Hindu mythology. “Yatra will go as per schedule. The state government will render full cooperation to the shrine board to ensure smooth conduct of the yatra”.
This year’s Amarnath Yatra will be for duration of 59 days. It will commence on July 2 and conclude on August 29, Raksha Bandan.
Singh said such statements should not be taken seriously as these have been issued to get publicity.
Geelani while addressing a public rally in South Kashmir’s Tral township yesterday had called for restricting annual Amarnath pilgrimage to 30-days and controlling of the pilgrims.
Taking a dig at separatists, Deputy Chief Minister said, “They have lost their ground in the Valley and are now trying to get publicity by issuing such situation to communalise the situation.
“People are not following them and only a few hundred people were at Geelani’s rally yesterday,” he said adding they (separatists) are trying to vitiate the atmosphere in the State but would not be allowed to succeed.
Singh said people of Jammu and Kashmir have rejected the separatists and given mandate and power to PDP and BJP government. “People want development and rehabilitation of flood victims”.
Asked whether State government will take any action Geelani after Pakistani flags were waved and pro-Pakistan slogans chanted during his rally at Tral yesterday, he said law will take its own course.
Geelani’s close aide Masarat Alam was detained on April 17 and booked under stringent Public Safety Act (PSA) after he chanted pro-Pakistan slogans during a separatist rally in Srinagar on Aril 15. Pakistani flags were also waved during the rally.
Meanwhile, Shri Ram Sena (SRS) leader Rajiv Mahajan threatened to launch agitation if duration of Amarnath Yatra was curtailed.
“If Muslims and Christians can visit their religious places during any time of the year, why can't the Hindus be allowed to visit Amarnath shrine as per their wish,” he said and warned that curtailing duration of Amarnath Yatra could lead to a dangerous confrontation.
Meanwhile, BJP State General Secretary and MLA Rajiv Jasortia said raising Pakistan flag in Indian soil is outrageous.
“Such flag bearers are obviously agent provocateurs and should be dealt with sternly as traitors. Their place is nothing but jail and they should never be allowed out and mix with other law abiding citizens and mislead them into ungrateful acts,” he said.
Jasrotia said no government can tolerate waving of Pakistani flag and chanting of pro-Pakistan slogans.
He said separatists have no influence worth the name and successive elections have proved that they are a fringe force, which does not deserve any mercy.