Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) chief Nitin Gadkari on Wednesday denied that his party was trying to derive political mileage from the flag-hoisting march to Srinagar as it was a rally to "defy anti-India elements in Kashmir".
"Some people say there is politics in hoisting the national flag at Lal Chowk (in Srinagar). What politics was involved in hoisting the flag. This is not politics but our duty," Gadkari told reporters after hoisting the tricolour at the party headquarters.
"The march to Srinagar was to defy anti-India elements in Kashmir. Some leaders had raised anti-government slogans in Lal Chowk (during the last summer agitation)," he added.
Gadkari said the arrest of the BJP leaders "by the Congress and National Conference government" in Jammu and Kashmir was "unfortunate".
He alleged that the central and state governments had surrendered to the pressure from separatist leaders by disallowing the BJP to unfurl the national flag.