New Delhi: The decision not to hoist the
national flag at Lal Chowk in Srinagar on Republic Day today
drew flak from main opposition BJP, which said it would not
only demoralise security forces but also encourage terrorists.
BJP spokesperson Prakash Javadekar said, "this is a meek
surrender by the government before the separatist elements in
the valley. More serious is the reason given for such a
shameful decision that unfurling of the national flag would
provoke separatists and extremists and is a needless
BJP said that by ordering the BSF and CRPF not to hoist
the national tricolour at Lal Chowk, the government had
broken a convention which began 19 years ago when in 1991, the
then party president Murli Manohar Joshi had unfurled the flag
"Government`s decision is demoralising for security
forces and the Indian public. This decision must be seen
against the backdrop of Hurriyat`s practice of observing Bandh
on 26th January every year," Javadekar said.
He recalled how BJP had organised a flag hoisting
ceremony at Lal Chowk last year. "It is pertinent to note that
last year, Kashmiri people participated in large numbers in
flag hoisting ceremony at Lal Chowk," he said.
However, when asked why BJP did not hoist the flag this
year, he evaded a direct reply.