After the Congress alleged lapses in security arrangments in the Rahul Gandhi-led Bharat Jodo Yatra, the Jammu & Kashmir Police on Friday said that it was not consulted before taking any decision on discontinuation of the yatra after 1 km by the organisers.
Taking to Twitter, the Jammu & Kashmir Police said, “JKP was not consulted before taking any decision on discontinuation of Yatra after conducting 1 km yatra by organizers. The rest of yatra continued #peacefully. There was no security lapse at all. We will provide foolproof security.”
“Only authorised persons identified by organisers and the frisked crowd were allowed inside towards the route of Yatra,” the police added.
The police further stated, “Organisers and managers of BJY did not intimate about large gatherings from Banihal joining the Yatra, which thronged near the starting point.”
“Full security arrangements were in place including 15 Coys of CAPFs and 10 Coys of JKP, comprising of ROPs and QRTs, route domination, lateral deployment and SFs were deployed for high-ridge and other deployments,” it added.
On Friday, Congress In-Charge of Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh, Rajani Patil alleged security lapses in Congress leader Rahul Gandhi-led Bharat Jodo Yatra, and accused the administration of the Union Territory of failing to manage the crowd.
“J&K UT Administration failed to provide security to Bharat Jodo Yatra led by Rahul Gandhi. Security lapses indicate the unfair and unprepared attitude of the UT administration. Office Of LG J-K,” Rajani Patil said in a tweet along with a picture from the spot.
All India Congress Committee (AICC) General Secretary KC Venugopal said that there was no security personnel with the Bharat Jodo Yatra for 15 minutes, and termed it a ‘serious lapse’.
“The security has been mishandled by concerned agencies here. For 15 mins, there have been no security officers with the Bharat Jodo Yatra here. This is a serious lapse. Rahul Gandhi and other yatris cannot walk without security,” Venugopal said speaking to mediapersons.
Rahul Gandhi-led Bharat Jodo Yatra, which is in its final leg in Jammu & Kashmir, resumed on Friday morning from the National Highway-44, Banihal Railway station, in the UT’s Ramban district.
Security was tightened in the area in the wake of the recent twin blasts on the outskirts of Jammu city on January 22 which rocked a busy locality in Narwal leaving atleast nine people injured.
The Bharat Jodo Yatra, which started in Kanyakumari on September 7, will conclude on January 30 in Srinagar after covering 3,970 km, 12 states and two Union territories. The reports of the Wayanad MP Rahul Gandhi’s security breach have come to the fore.
A security breach emerged at the Bharat Jodo Yatra on January 17 when an unknown man came out of the crowd and tried to hug Rahul Gandhi in Tanda in Punjab’s Hoshiarpur district. However, Gandhi later termed him “excited” and said it was the people’s enthusiasm.
Earlier on January 4, the Congress wrote to Union Home Minister Amit Shah alleging “security breaches” in the Bharat Jodo Yatra which entered the national capital on December 24.
Congress general secretary KC Venugopal in a letter to the Centre said the Delhi Police behaved like “mute spectators”, and completely failed to control the surging crowd and maintain a perimeter around Rahul Gandhi, who is assigned Z+ security.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)
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