Police cane charge BJP protesters at Indo-Pak border


Police used water cannons and canes to disperse protesters at the Attari border, which was turned into a battleground for sabre-rattling on Sunday by Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP) on the emotive Sarabjit Singh issue.
In retaliation, some agitators pelted police with stones and even damaged a police vehicle at the spot.
The police action came after party leaders and workers indulged in Pakistan-bashing and tried to move towards the zero line.
Led by the state BJP chief Kamal Sharma, about 2,000 party leaders and workers, including state ministers, assembled at the border to pay tributes to Sarabjit and later started a protest march towards the customs gate at the Indo-Pak border.
A posse of police, who had set up barricades, first tried to stop the advancing BJP men but used water canons and batons to disperse protesters since they were not ready to listen.
Shouting ‘Pakistan murdabad’ and ‘Sarabjit Singh amar rahe’, the BJP workers also beat up effigies of Pakistan president Asif Ali Zardari, Pakistan intelligence agency ISI and army chief.
A few BJP protesters even climbed atop the barricades and shouted provocative slogans. A few later courted arrest, including state BJP president Kamal Sharma and cabinet minister Anil Joshi.
Lashing out at Pakistan, BJP chief Kamal Sharma said, “We need to answer Pakistan in its own language. They do not deserve any soft approach. Pakistan’s establishment has no feelings for foreign prisoners. This is indicated by the way Sarabjit Singh was killed.”
Sharma also demanded severance of all relations with Pakistan. India had always shown magnanimity towards Pakistan but it had always stabbed our country in the back, the BJP leader alleged.
The party also accused the Union government of not doing much to help hundreds of Indian prisoners languishing in Pakistani jails.