National Highway blocked at Nagrota against politicising allotment of land to SASB

24 June 2008
The Daily Excelsior

Jammu: Hundreds of locals today staged protest and blocked the Jammu-Srinagar National Highway at Nagrota in city outskirts against separatist leaders and People's Democratic Party (PDP) for 'politicising' the transfer of forest land to Shri Amarnath Shrine Board (SASB). Shouting anti-Government slogans and criticizing the recent statements of Jammu and Kashmir Deputy Chief, Minister Muzaffar Hussain Baig and PDP president, Mehbooba Mufti, the protesters demanded immediate action against the leaders and alleged that people with vested interests are dividing State on communal basis. 'Besides National Conference patron, Dr Farooq Abdullah, who demanded the Government order sanctioning land diversion to be revoked, the PDP patron Mufti Mohammad Sayeed has also asked for the cancellation of 800 kanals of land which was transferred to Shri Amarnath Shrine Board,' alleged a local leader asserting that these leaders are 'politicising' the issue just to woo Muslim voters in the Valley for the forthcoming Assembly elections. However, the police dispersed the agitators to resume the traffic on the national highway after about half an hour. The agitation was also joined by BJP activists led by MLA Nagrota, Jugal Kishore Sharma. At Udhampur the irate Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha (BJYM) activists led by Party State president, Pawan Khajuria staged a demonstration at Sailan Talab and torched the effigies of People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and National Conference (NC) for communalising the atmosphere in the State on the allotment of 800 kanals of land to Shri Amarnath Shrine Board (SASB). They also held the Congress responsible for giving a leverage to PDP on the issue. Strongly condemning the recent statements of PDP leader and Deputy Chief Minister, Muzaffar Hussain Baig and NC patron and former Chief Minister, Dr Farooq Abdullah, Mr Khajuria said these leaders have come in their true colours now. He said when no hue and cry was raised over the allotment of 5500 kanals of land to Baba Ghulam Shah Badshah University in Rajouri by any body why separatists as well as the so called mainstream political parties raised a hue and cry over the allotment of land to SASB. Shiv Sena Balasahib Thakeray has also strongly condemned the separatist leaders and so called mainstream political parties including PDP and NC for launching a vicious tirade against the allotment of land to SASB. The Sena in a meeting here today chaired by its vice president, Kuldeep Luthra said that the vested elements have always tried to sabotage the yatra over these years by raking up the ecological and other issues. He warned the Hurriyat leadership to restrain themselves failing which they will be engulfed in the fire which they have themselves lit. Beopar Mandal Association J&K has also strongly condemned the outbursts of Hurriyat and other Kashmiri leaders against the SASB and Shri Amarnath Yatra. Talking to media persons here today, president of the Association Satpaul Sharma said that these leaders have hurt the religious sentiments of Hindus through their irresponsible statements. Kul Hind Nove Soan Kashmir Front which has now been named as Soan Kashmir Front in a meeting held under the chairmanship of Shadi Lal Pandita has also strongly condemned the Hurriyat and other Kashmiri leaders for launching a vicious campaign in Valley against the allotment of 800 kanals of land to Amarnath Shrine Board.