?Nationwide agitation if Amarnath Yatra is restricted? ?Prakash Sharma
By Khajuria S. Kant in Jammu
?Bajrang Dal and VHP would launch a nationwide agitation against the Jammu and Kashmir government if the yatra to Amarnath is restricted and registration fee being charged from the pilgrims is not stopped?, warned Shri Prakash Sharma, national convenor of Bajrang Dal. Talking to mediapersons in Jammu, he alleged that the state government was bent upon creating hurdles in the Amarnath Yatra by raking up fresh controversies every year. He said that the yatra should take place as per the aspirations of the Hindus and no ?ifs and buts? would be accepted by the Hindu organisations in this regard.
He warned that if the government continued to create hurdles, thousands of Dal activists would reach Jammu to join the yatra by defying the restrictions imposed. Strongly criticising the state government for charging registration fee from pilgrims, he said that the move revealed the discriminatory attitude of the state government towards Hindus since no fee was charged from the pilgrims of others religions visiting their respective pilgrim centres.
He alleged that the state government had made special arrangements for Muslim pilgrims visiting Mecca and other places but when it came to the Hindus, restrictions were imposed.
Hailing the state High Court'sdecision, Shri Sharma said that by filing the PIL before the upper bench of the High Court, the state government had revealed its communal intentions. He accused the government of hatching a conspiracy to curb the yatra by creating hurdles in its smooth conduct, like imposing registration fee and banning the social and religious organisations from arranging langars at various places. He demanded that Jammu should be made a permanent base camp for Amarnath Yatra and parchi system, like the Vaishno Devi shrine, should be introduced for Amarnath pilgrims also. ?The Dal does not want to toe the line on the controversy over the issue of time whether the yatra should be of two months or of three months; we demand that any pilgrim reaching Jammu should be allowed to have darshan at the holy cave,? he said. ?The yatra should remain open from Guru Purnima onwards till Shrawan Purnima as per the Hindu traditions,? he added.