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‘Khalistan’ Flags Draped Over Himachal Assembly Gates, Graffiti On Walls

Jairam Thakur said the culprits took advantage of the police deployment inside the Assembly campus.Chandigarh: Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Jairam Thakur has ordered an investigation after flags of 'Khalistan' were…

Jairam Thakur said the culprits took advantage of the police deployment inside the Assembly campus.

Chandigarh:

Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Jairam Thakur has ordered an investigation after flags of ‘Khalistan’ were found draped over the gates and boundary wall of the Himachal Pradesh Legislative Assembly in Dharamshala this morning. Pro-Khalistan graffiti was also painted the walls. The state police said they suspect the involvement of tourists from Punjab.

The state, Chief Minister Thakur said, will review the security along the borders with neighbouring states — Jammu and Kashmir, Ladakh, Uttarakhand, Haryana, and Punjab. Himachal Pradesh attracts tourists from across India.

“It might have happened late at night or early morning today,” Khushal Sharma, the police chief of Kangra region, was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.

“We have removed the Khalistan flags from the Vidhan Sabha gate. It could be an act of some tourists from Punjab. We are going to register a case today,” Mr Sharma said.

An intelligence alert issued on April 26 had warned of such an incident, sources said.

The alert claimed that the chief of Sikhs for Justice, Gurupatwant Singh Pannu, had issued a letter to the Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister stating that a flag of Bhindranwale and Khalistan would be hoisted in Shimla, sources said.

Himachal Pradesh had banned vehicles carrying Bhindranwale and Khalsitani flags, which agitated the SFJ. The organisation had announced that it would hoist the Khalistani flag on March 29 but could not do so due to heavy security.

“I condemn the cowardly incident of raising Khalistan flags at the gate of Dharamshala Assembly Complex in the dark of night. Only winter session is held here, so there is a need for more security arrangements only during that time,” Chief Minister Thakur tweeted in Hindi this morning.

“Taking advantage of this, this cowardly incident has been carried out, but we will not tolerate it. This incident will be investigated immediately and strict action will be taken against the culprits. I would like to tell those people that if you have the courage, then come out in the light of day, not in the dark of night,” a second tweet read.

Mr Thakur said the culprits took advantage of the police deployment inside the Assembly campus.

“It is being said that the incident took place at night. The police are deployed in the interior of the Vidhan Sabha campus since it is very large. So the poster was put up on the wall and the main gate of the Assembly. The CCTV footage is being probed to get a clue about the culprits,” he was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.

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