Give up path of confrontation: Chidambaram tells BJP

Give up path of confrontation: Chidambaram tells BJP

The Home Minister noted that the Jammu and Kashmir government has made it clear that it would neither let any yatra to Srinagar nor would it allow any assembly at Lal Chowk. "The BJP leaders should respect the orders passed by the state government. It would be most unfortunate if the BJP leaders defy the restrictions placed by the state government or deliberately cause a breach of peace. There is no justification whatsoever to push a political agenda that will certainly affect peace and law and order in Jammu and Kashmir," he said in a statement.

Chidambaram said the state government has also made it clear that it would not allow the BJP leaders to cross the bridge connecting Madhopur and Lakhanpur and enter Jammu and Kashmir.

Drawing the attention of the BJP leaders to the statement made by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh January 22, Chidambaram said the Republic Day is a day of celebration and is not an occasion for divisive politics. "I would request the two Leaders of the Opposition (in Parliament) and their colleagues to give up the path of confrontation, return to Delhi and join the celebrations in Delhi on Republic Day," he said.

The Home Minister said he had spoken to Jaitley and Chief Minister Omar Abdullah yesterday. During the conversation with Jaitley, Chidambaram had told him that he and his colleagues had made their point and that they should not defy the orders of the state government which was the best judge to decide whether there was a threat to law and order and public peace.

"I requested them to return to Delhi. The BJP leaders were also offered an opportunity to address a press conference at Jammu airport and, thereafter, leave Jammu and Kashmir. Regrettably, they turned down the offer," he said.

In the circumstances, the state government had to remove the BJP leaders and take them to Madhopur in Punjab. They were lodged for the night in a rest house in Madhopur, he said.