PM Narendra Modi to visit Jammu and Kashmir today; security intensified
Unprecedented security arrangements have been made for the visit of PM Narendra Modi, who would address a public rally in Jammu and Kashmir.
Srinagar: Prime Minister Narendra Modi will visit Jammu and Kashmir on Saturday where he would address two public rallies and also inaugurate the second phase of the Baglihar hydel project.
Elaborate security arrangements have been made with additional police and paramilitary forces deployed on the strategic Jammu-Srinagar National Highway.
Modi will address a public meeting at the Sher-e-Kashmir cricket stadium here.
"The Prime Minister will inaugurate the 450 MW Baglihar Hydro Electric Project Stage-II, and lay the foundation stone for the 4-laning of the Udhampur-Ramban and Ramban-Banihal section of National Highway 44, at a function in Chanderkote, Ramban. He will also address the gathering there," an official statement said.
The venue for the Prime Minister's rally here - Sher-e-Kashmir Cricket Stadium - has been turned into a virtual fortress with Special Protection Group (SPG) taking over it, officials said, adding a large posse of police and paramilitary personnel have also been deployed in and around the area to secure it.
Many CCTV cameras have been installed in and around the venue to keep an eye on the movement of people.
As separatist groups have called for a parallel rally to that of Modi at Tourist Reception Centre ground - a stone's throw from cricket stadium, the authorities have carried out a crackdown on them to foil their plans.
Several of the top separatist leaders have been taken into preventive detention while some leaders including Syed Ali Shah Geelani and Mirwaiz Umer Farooq have been placed under house arrest.
A senior police officer said BSF guards, manning the International Border in the Jammu region, too have been asked to remain on high alert to foil any infiltration attempt from across the border.
Arrangements for the Prime Minister's visit were reviewed in a high level meeting in Jammu chaired by Deputy Chief Minister Nirmal Singh.
Meanwhile, Opposition National Conference leader Omar Abdullah has alleged that the Jammu and Kashmir government has issued instructions to government employees, including police personnel and daily-rated workers, to attend Modi's rally.
"Colleagues tell me that their JK police guard has been drastically scaled down & the personnel ordered to participate in the 7th Nov rally (of the Prime Minister)," Omar tweeted.
The former chief minister also claimed that similar instructions have been issued to special police officers, anganwadi workers and daily wagers as PDP workers are reluctant to attend Modi's rally.
In another tweet, he said it was shameless on part of the government to use state apparatus for Modi's rally.
"Just saw State Govt employees in an AMBULANCE tying up banners welcoming the PM on behalf of the state Health Minister. #Shameless," he wrote.