Guwahati, Jan 7 (IANS): Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) president Nitin Gadkari arrived here today for the party's two-day national executive meeting amid protests from party workers at the Assam government's decision not to provide him with security escort from the airport to the city.
"It is indeed shocking to find no security escorts for our president who arrived at the airport in the morning. He reached the city, driving 26 km from the airport without any security escort despite authorities being intimated before hand about travel plans of BJP leaders," Assam State BJP president Ranjit Dutta told IANS.
Gadkari and at least 20 other leaders were escorted by party workers and supporters from the airport to a city hotel for a meeting of all the BJP State presidents of the country and senior office-bearers.
Soon after Gadkari and other leaders reached the hotel in downtown Guwahati, hundreds of BJP supporters staged a protest by squatting on a main thoroughfare, causing a massive traffic jam. The protestors later dispersed shouting anti-Congress slogans.
"It is very unfortunate that the Congress-led government in Assam has simply ignored the security risks of our leaders," BJP MP from Assam Ramen Deka said.
The two-day national executive meeting kicks off Saturday and the BJP is expected to come up with at least three important resolutions, primarily targeting the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government at the centre on charges of corruption, scams, and price rise.
"The national executive is being held in Assam at a time when assembly elections are due in the state, and hence it assumes immense significance. We shall see to it that the Congress is ousted and a BJP-led government is installed in Assam," Gadkari told IANS before chairing the meeting of the party's state presidents and office-bearers.
Other BJP leaders, including LK Advani, Sushma Swaraj, Narendra Modi, Arun Jaitley, and Murli Manohar Joshi, are expected to arrive in the city early Saturday.