Former BJP ministers, party MLAs, office bearers, MLA Udhampur Pawan Gupta among participants
In order to celebrate its 93rd foundation day on the occasion of Vijaydashmi on Thursday, activists of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), Vihswa Hindu Parishad (VHP) and Bajrang Dal took out rallies and performed the “Shastra Poojan” (weapon worshipping) across the Jammu Region.
During the day, the RSS activists performed Shastra Poojan (weapon worshipping) and marched through the main towns of RS Pura, Kathua, Vijaypur, Bari Brahamana, Udhampur, Ramban, Kishtwar and Bhaderwah in the “Ganvesh” (the complete RSS dress) and sang the “Sanchalan Geet” (RSS group song) invoking “Maa Bharti” (motherland).
In Jammu’s RS Pura area, around 375 RSS, VHP and Bajrang Dal activists marched with the “lathis” (batons) in the main town after performing the “Shastra Poojan” (weapon worshipping) after Pooja (religious prayer) at Rameshwar Dham. They were led by senior RSS leader, Brigadier (Retired) Suchet Singh who was the “Path Sanchalak” (route incharge) during the rallies while as former PHE minister Sham Choudhary, former MLA Bishnah, Ashwani Sharma, BJP state general secretary, Sardar Narinder Singh among others participated in the march.
In Kathua town, the Shastra Poojan was performed at RSS headquarters near ITI Kathua following which around 250 RSS, VHP and Bajrang Dal leaders marched through the Mukherjee Chowk, Shaheedi Chowk, Captain Chowk and concluded the procession back at the RSS headquarters.
In Vijaypur town of Samba district, around 70 right wing activists led by RSS leader Shashi Pal Vaid took out a route march from Railway Road towards Canal Park Road which culminated back at Railway Road.
In Bari Brahamana town of Samba district, the RSS, VHP and Bajrang Dal leaders performed the Shastra Poojan after the Pooja at Government Park on Bishnah Road following which, in the form of a procession, the cadre marched through SIDCO chowk and other locations of the town. The rally culminated back at Government Park on Bishnah Road. RSS leader Satish Gupta was the Path Sanchalak at Bari Brahmana.
In Udhampur town, around 240 RSS workers led by BJP state vice-president Pawan Khajuria performed the Shastra Poojan at mini-stadium after the religious prayer and then marched through major locations of the town. The rally culminated back at mini-stadium Udhampur. Independent MLA Pawan Gupta also participated in the RSS march.
In Ramban town, a full dress procession was taken out by RSS and VHP leaders wherein MLA Ramban, Neelam Langeh was the route incharge. The rally started from government higher secondary school ground and after passing through various markets of district headquarters including Maitra and Jammu Srinagar National Highway, culminated back at school ground.
Meanwhile, in Kishtwar town, over 1600 volunteers of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) took out the route march in various parts of Bhadarwah and Kishtwar towns as a prelude to the celebrations of Dussehra festival.
Here, the RSS cadre wearing white shirt, brown trouser and black caps, took out a procession, which started from Bhartiya Vidya Mandir Ganpat Bazaar and passing through different locations of the town including Seri Bazaar, Laxmi Narayan Chowk, Chobia link Road and New Bus Stand, the rally culminated at historic Seri Bazaar, where Dussehra celebrations were held in the evening.
At Kishtwar, a rally was taken out by RSS activists, which started from Sarkoot Mandir Kishtwar, and after passing through various markets including Dak Banglow, Char Chinar, Kuleed Chowk, old DC office, culminated back at Sarkoot Mandir Kishtwar, where parcharks addressed the volunteers.
In Jammu, the RSS Rally and Shastra Poojan programmes shall be organised on October 21, in Samba on October 20 and in Reasi and Arnas on October 27 and 21 respectively.
In the year 2015, the RSS rallies stoked controversies in the Jammu region when the organisation cadre, during the route marches, brandished weapons including swords and guns.
However, this year, the cadre was not allowed to brandish or use weapons during the rallies.
“We were strictly warned against using weapons during our marches this year. So, our cadre marched with batons only,” senior RSS leader, Brigadier (Retired) Suchet Singh told Greater Kashmir.