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Time to do or die: Advani

Time to do or die: Advani

Author: Pervaiz Sultan
Publication: The Pioneer
Date: August 10, 2008

The BJP, on Saturday, reiterated that there was no question of agreeing to anything less than reallocation of land to Shri Amarnath Shrine Board (SASB).

Speaking at a crowded rally of the party's youth workers at the Ramlila Maidan here on Saturday, the Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha L K Advani gave a call for "do or die" on the issue.

Impressed by the huge turnout of the workers of Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha (BJYM), Advani said: "Sixty-six years back, on August 9, 1942, Mahatma Gandhi gave the slogan of "Karo Ya Maro" (Do or Die) which served as an ultimatum to the British to quit India. Today, the time has come to give another call of 'do or die' to maintain the integrity of the nation."

"As Shyama Prasad Mukherjee had said about J&K in 1950s, 'there cannot be do vidhan (two laws), do pradhan (two Prime Ministers) and do nishan (two emblems)', similarly we have to remind the Government that there could not be two sets of rules in one country. The allocation of land to the shrine board was withdrawn under pressure of subversive elements. This has to be countered tooth and nail," said Advani. Expressing doubts about the Government's intention to resolve the Amarnath tangle, Advani said: "The composition of all party delegation sent by the Centre gives the game away. It has on board people like leaders of National Conference (NC) and Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) who are responsible for the crisis."

The focus of the rally christened as 'Yuva Kranti rally' was on the ongoing agitation in Jammu on the Amarnath issue. Before the start of the rally, the former deputy Prime Minister offered prayers to a replica of ice-lingam created on a side of the stage. The ground resounded with sloganeering of "Har Har Mahadev and Bam-Bam Bhole." Reminiscing Mukherjee's contribution, Advani said: "Had Mukherjee not made the sacrifice one would not have been able to fly the Tricolour there (in J&K). This Mufti (Mohammad Sayeed) who became the Chief Minister would not have become the Chief Minister," he said.. He urged the party to fully endorse whatever decision the SASS takes on the issue. "This is a question of nation's integrity and stability. This is not Jammu's struggle, it is whole India's struggle," he said.

Besides Advani, the BJP President Rajnath Singh, former Union Ministers - Sushma Swaraj, Vijay Goel, Rajiv Pratap Rudy, Syed Shahnawaz Hussain and Vijay Kumar Malhotra, the deputy leader of Party in Lok Sabha - also addressed the massive rally. Criticising the way the UPA Government was tackling the issues of terrorism, Singh slammed the Congress-led Centre and said that without having any alternative arrangement, the POTA was scrapped by the UPA.. "Today, terrorism is the biggest threat in the country and it is growing rapidly. Our land is being snatched from us and destroyed. After abolishing POTA, the Government has remained a mute spectator to acts of terror," Singh said.

On the issue of lifting of a ban on SIMI by the Unlawful Activities Prevention Tribunal (UAPT), Singh slammed the UPA Government for not placing sufficient material before the tribunal. "SIMI was behind the recent bomb blasts in Jaipur, Bangalore and Ahmedabad, but the tribunal lifted the ban from the terrorist organisation because the Government did not give proofs to the tribunal. Justice Geeta Mittal said that those evidences should be presented by the Government, was not placed before the tribunal."

Swaraj also emphasised that the land should be transferred in the name of Shrine Board because it was not the question of 100 acres of land only but it is the matter of equal facilities and equal rights. Yardstick should be the same for each community, she said.

Pointing out the incapability of the UPA Government, Amit Thakar, National President (BJYM) said, in the last four and half years, the Government gave nothing to the people of India but terrorism, bomb blasts, Naxalites, unemployment and crime. "We have not gathered here to get any ration shop, job or any election ticket from the Manmohan Government. We are here with the resolution of getting 100 acres of land for the SASB," Thakar said.

Several thousand members of the BJYM from all over India thronged the venue in the Capital on Saturday morning. People from Gujarat, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, UP, MP, Bihar, Punjab, Kerala and Assam attended the massive rally and listened to the BJP leaders enthusiastically for three hours. Murli Manohar Joshi, Anant Kumar, Ravi Shankar Prasad, Delhi BJP President Dr Harshvardhan, Leader of Opposition in Delhi Vidhan Sabha Jagdish Mukhi Smriti Irani were present in the rally.

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