Massive demonstration by saints in Jammu
By Khajuria S. Kant in Jammu
Coming down heavily on Jammu & Kashmir government for its indifferent attitude and double standards on Amarnath pilgrimage, a large number of saints and VHP workers staged a demonstration in Jammu on June 21, the first day of the yatra. The protest was staged under the banner of Baba Amarnath Yatra Nyas (BAYN) and was led by state VHP president, Dr Rama Kant Dubey. Raising slogans against the government, the protestors marched on the city roads. They rapped on the Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed'sknuckle for not taking the historic Amarnath yatra seriously. They demanded that Jammu be made a permanent base camp for the pilgrims and not Baltal. They also demanded that pilgrims be allowed to leave for darshan of the holy cave without registration beyond July 6 also.
Addressing the protesters, Dr Dubey said that the government would not be allowed to deface the original framwork of the yatra by imposing unnecessary restrictions. He questioned the government'sindifferent attitude to the pilgrims. ?The pilgrims going prior to July 6 will move without registration while those who follow later will have to get themselves registered,? he said, asking when no restrictions were imposed during the Haj and Ajmer Sharief pilgrimages why the restrictions on Amarnath pilgrimage? Lashing out at the state government, Shri Khem Chand Sharma, north zone organising secretary of VHP, said that no information centre had been set up for the pilgrims by the government, even though hundreds of pilgrims had started reaching Jammu from different parts of the country.