Powerless nights charge Jammu for protests on Amarnath land row

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Jammu, Jul 31 (UNI) After sunset when darkness engulfs this City of Temples, several groups of people come out of their houses and walk down the streets shouting ''Bam Bam Bhole'' under the light of 'mashals'. But not for worship! A question may strike the mind at first if they are rehearsing for next day's protest demonstration against the government for restoration of forest land to Shri Amarnath Shrine Board (SASB).

But for the class 12 student Bunti, who was one among the hundreds of people marching through the Baskhi Nagar at around 2200 hrs with torches in their hands, it was a judicious use of time.

''I wanted to complete my fourth chapter of Physics before going to bed, but I have to wait for two hours due to power curtailment.

By joining the group of these people, I am contributing for ongoing agitation,'' Bunti told UNI.

For Renu Bala, a housewife, participating in the night march at Old City locality, was an altogether a different reason.

''I have cooked food for the family but we cannot have dinner as light will come after two hours. Joining the protesters serves double purposes -- first raising voice against the discriminatory attitude of our successive governments towards people of Jammu region and secondly, help pass time outside the hot and humid atmosphere inside our houses.'' Women have devised another method to ''awaken the government'' during night. They hold night march shouting ''bam-bam bhole'' on the beats of utensils.

Torch rallies throughout the city during night hours have become a daily feature to lodge protest against the government for revoking the order diversion of land to the SASB.

May they belong to different ages, faiths and communities, but all protesters in the night marches get charged by the powerlessness in their areas to protest against government's controversial revocation of diversion of forest land.

The winter capital city is witnessing massive protests and police-public clashes for restoration of land to the SASB.

UNI VJ SP RN1531

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