Majid Kapra

BJP protests in Srinagar against security withdrawal of political workers

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Party gen secy surrenders his security cover in protest

Photo/Kashmir Images

Srinagar, May 07: Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Tuesday held a protest at Press Enclave in Srinagar against the security withdrawal of the political workers in Jammu and Kashmir.

Scores of BJP workers assembled at the Press Enclave and demanded protection to their workers. The protestors were led by BJP state general secretary (organization) Ashok Kaul, who surrendered his security to protest against the withdrawal of security to the party activists by the government and the killing of party’ district vice-president for Anantnag, Gul Mohammad Mir by militants on Saturday.

“I will also not take any security till the same is not provided to other political workers as well,” Kaul told media men.

Kaul said he was surrendering his security as a mark of protest till all political activists in the state were given security.

Condemning Mir’s killing, the BJP state general secretary said the party leader’s killing was a failure of the state administration.

“He (Mir) was given security in June 2018 after we requested the government. A constable and a SPO were provided to him. But unfortunately, the constable was withdrawn in December 2018. After that, his house was attacked, but he fought and saved not only himself but the SPO as well,” Kaul said.

“I had written to SSP Anantnag on 13 January 2019 for providing him security once again. I was told that he had no threat and should return home as he was putting up at party office at Jawahar Nagar (in Srinagar). Afterwards, the SPO was also withdrawn. The (government’s) grievance cell also wrote to the police last month to provide him security, but it was not. This is the failure of the administration,” he said.

Kaul asked why was security provided to Mir in 2018 if he had no threat and held the state administration responsible for his killing.

“If he (Mir) had no threat, then why were the two guards provided to him in the first place. I hold this administration responsible for doing this (withdrawal of security) and having him martyred,” the BJP leader said.

Kaul said he had sent Mir home from Srinagar after about two months as the police gave him an assurance that Mir’s life was not in danger.

“So, I also hold myself guilty and hence surrender my security and will not take it back till security is given to all political activists. When my workers are not secure, then why should I take the security? I am surrendering my security as a mark of protest,” he said.

Kaul demanded the arrest of Mir’s killers and asked the government to provide security to all political activists in the Kashmir Valley.

The BJP’ state general secretary later took an auto-rickshaw from the Press Colony and left behind the vehicle and the security personnel assigned to him there.

Meanwhile in Jammu, another party general secretary Yudhvir Sethi Tuesday said the recent withdrawal of security to political activists was an “immature decision” of security agencies.

He urged the Governor administration to review the entire security setup by convening a meeting of police, civil administration and the Estates department so that those facing genuine threat could be provided immediate protection and government accommodation.

Sethi also demanded that the officials who recommended the withdrawal of the security cover should be taken to task.

Sethi demanded protection for all political leaders “actively serving society” and the withdrawal of the security cover to those “misusing the state apparatus” for their personal gains and status symbol.

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