Beating the retreat: BSF lifts crowd restriction

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, Amritsar
  • Updated: Nov 11, 2014 08:16 IST

As thousands of tourists who reached the Attari border to witness Beating the Retreat ceremony could not watch the spectacle due to the BSF’s restriction on crowd, the border guarding force has now removed the restriction, fearing a stampede like situation outside the visitors’ gallery.

After a blast on Pakistan side of the border that left more than 55 people dead, the BSF had imposed a restriction on the gathering during the ceremony and allowed only 5000 tourists to attend the ceremony every evening.

Once the visitors’ gallery was full, the BSF installed ‘Housefull’ boards near the Integrated Check Post and thousands of tourists had to go back.

Seeing that the situation could lead to stampede or even some security issue as those left out used to protest, the BSF has changed its decision. On Monday, everyone was allowed to move into the gallery.

BSF DIG, MF Farooqui said, “We had earlier taken a decision to allow only 5,000 tourists in the gallery. But looking at the rush that was left outside, we have now decided to revert the decision and now everybody is being allowed.”

He said, “We were seeing crowd protests and also there was a danger of stampede. But people will be allowed in only after thorough security checks and norms”.

Meanwhile, the BSF deferred its ‘Day Tourism’ plan at the border claiming that current security circumstances do not allow it to implement such a scheme. The plan was scheduled to take off on Monday.

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