In what seems to be a great disrespect towards the National Anthem, most people were seen seated while the National Anthem was being sung at the Independence Day function organized by the Kashmir government at Bakshi Stadium, Srinagar. However, after hoisting of the flag by chief minister Mehbooba Mufti, the judges of High Court, ministers, MLAs, bureaucrats, the office-bearers of political parties and other dignitaries stood in unison for the honor of the National Anthem. The occasion also saw the Chief Minister being given the guard of honor.
Strangely, although the stadium has a capacity to hold 18,000 spectators, only three thousand seemed to be present to witness the most important official program hosted by the government. Furthermore, it was for the first time in the history of the J&K government that Uttar Pradesh Police’s team had taken part in the Independence Day parade. But such low turnout of spectators was no less depressing to the visitors as well.
Criticizing the disappointing turnout at the Independence Day celebrations organized by the government, Deputy Superintendent of Police Shivdan Singh, who led the Uttar Pradesh Police team, said:
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In our state, Independence Day is celebrated like a festival.
Meanwhile, the situation was exactly different in Jammu. Deputy Chief Minister Nirmal Singh hoisted the tricolor amid tight security arrangement in the official Independence Day program organized at the mini stadium, located inside the famous Parade Ground of the city. After that, Singh was presented with the guard of honor and took the salute from the march past by the state police, the CRPF, Indian Reserve Police, National Cadet Corps, and Forest Conservation Force Troops.
More than 2,500 students from different government and private schools in Jammu participated in the event and presented endearing programs.