Monday, June 24, 2002, Chandigarh, India

National Capital Region--Delhi


M A I N   N E W S

Divide J&K into 4: VHP
Seeks separate state for Hindus

Hardwar, June 23
The VHP today demanded that Jammu and Kashmir be divided into four and demanded a public debate on the activities of madarsaas, Tableiq movement and Darul-Uloom-Islam of Deoband.

“The Abdullah government was conducting itself as a “Muslim sultanate” and treating Hindus shabbily. Five Hindu-dominated districts of Jammu should be made a separate state, a union territory be carved out of area northeast of Jehlum river in Kashmir valley for settling Hindus there and Ladakh be given status of union territory,” the parishad resolution on Jammu and Kashmir said.

The VHP’s Kendriya Margdarshak Mandal (central advisory board), which concluded its two-day meeting here, said in a resolution on Godhra train burning incident that “it was an attack of jehadi ideology on Hindu society”.

“Activities of madarsaas, Tableiq movement and Darul-Uloom-Islam of Deoband should be discussed in public if incidents like this are to be prevented in future,” the resolution said.

The VHP also said it was least concerned if its stand on the Ayodhya issue affected the stability of the Vajpayee government.

The VHP had yesterday said it was not bound by its earlier decision to abide by the court verdict on the issue. The BJP had, on the other hand, distanced itself from the parishad’s stand with BJP spokesman V.K. Malhotra saying that his party favoured the court verdict to resolve the matter.

To a query on BJP MP Swami Chinmayand’s criticism of VHP for its harsh comment on the Vajpayee government, VHP international general secretary Pravin Bhai Togadiya said: “Sants don’t do what politicians want (them to do).”

“We are here to fulfil the aspirations of millions of Hindus. We are not bothered about what political parties think about VHP’s stand,” he told reporters here this morning.

VHP vice-president Acharya Giriraj Kishore said sadhus were not under the government control. Mr Togadiya today reiterated that the parishad could not accept the court verdict if it went against the Hindus. “How can 90 crore Hindus accept that the Ram Janambhoomi site is not the birthplace of Lord Rama,” he added.

Meanwhile, the VHP has decided to take legal action against Mahant Dharam Das, who claims to be main trustee of Ram Janambhoomi Nyas, for levelling allegations of embezzlement of funds of the trust against its leadership. UNI

TNS adds from Delhi: The VHP and the All India Muslim Personel Law Board in separate statements have refused to talk to each other to resolve the Ayodhya tangle.

The Left parties including the CPM, CPI and CPI (ML), have expressed concern at the VHP dissociating itself from the assurance it had given in March on abiding by the court verdict on the Ayodhya issue.

“The plan to start Ram Temple construction campaign from July-end to culminate in early 2003 will further vitiate the atmosphere and spread the communal position deeper in the country”, the CPM said in a statement here.

The CPI described as outrageous VHP leader Ashok Singhal’s statement at Hardwar in which he had accused Muslims of “leading the country towards partition” and threatened that they would be made to live in refugee camps like in Gujarat. 


Akharas boycott sammelan
K.G. Dutt

Hardwar, June 23
The plans of the VHP regarding the Ram Janambhoomi Temple construction got a jolt when it failed to get its stand endorsed by sadhu akharas here. The opening session of the Kendriya Margdarshak Mandal of the VHP, which started yesterday, was boycotted by all leading organisations of the sadhus. The meeting was boycotted by the Akhil Bhartiya Sant Samiti, the Khat Darshan Sadhu Samaj Parishad, the All-India Pracheen Garib Dasi Parishad and the Akhil Bhartiya Akhara Parishad.

The hawkish stand taken by the mandal with regard to the Muslim community and its changing stance on the court verdict regarding the temple construction was criticised by members of the leading akharas. Mahant Harashwardhan Singh of the Nirmala Akhara expressed unhappiness over the stance of the VHP with regard to the Muslim community. He maintained that such a strong posture could lead to more ‘communal violence’ in the country.

The sadhus also resented the use of the temple issue for furthering political prospects of the BJP. Brahmachari Braham Swaroop was of the view that the sadhus were not against temple construction. They just wanted that the issue should not be politicised and none should be allowed to draw political mileage out of it. A large number of sadhus also severely criticised yesterday’s resolution of the VHP threatening the Muslims.

The VHP had been trying for the past one month to rope in the sant samaj of Hardwar in the proceedings of the Margdarshak Mandal. Only three local sadhus were present at the meeting for which over 100 sadhus had come from all over the country.

The general secretary of the Akhil Bhartiya Akhara Parishad, who is a member of the Margdarshak Mandal, did not turn up for the meeting. The head of the Juna Akhara, Maha Mandleshwar Avdeshanand Giri, who had participated in the preliminary meeting of the VHP on March 21, did not attend yesterday’s meeting of the mandal.

Amongst the prominent saints from Hardwar who participated in the mandal meeting were swami Satya Mitra Nand Giri, Mahamandleshwar Santoshi Maa and BJP MP Swami Chinmaya Nanda.

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