The BJP’s state-wide protest against Moradabad SSP Dharamvir Singh, announced for Saturday, has received support from its right-wing outfits – Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP), Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) and Bajrang Dal.
These pro-Hindutva organisations will join the saffron party’s agitation over the Kanth row, in which removal of a loudspeaker from a temple by the police in Akbarpur Chanderi village last month snowballed into a communal controversy, also resulting in the injury of the then Moradabad DM in violent clashes on July 4 during their attempt to hold a mahapanchayat by the party’s state unit. “This is a religious matter and VHP cannot stay away from this. We will support BJP agitation on Saturday and take part in their agitation in all the districts,” VHP’s secretary for Meerut, Braj and Uttarakhand region, Shree Prasad said.
The decision follows BJP’s announcement that all party MPs, MLAs and other officer-bearers of western UP region will reach Kanth police station to lodge FIR against the SSP while simultaneously holding demonstrations in other districts barring Moradabad, where the district administration has imposed Section 144 of the CrPC. BJP leaders have alleged that the SSP had acted as “a Samajwadi Party loyalist” and arrested those named in the FIRs “even before the violence erupted”.
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“ABVP has the same opinion about the SSP and hence its workers in all districts will support BJP in the protest,” ABVP regional organiation secretary, UP and Uttarakhand, Dharampal Singh said.
Rakesh Verma, Awadh head of Bajrang Dal, said its workers, too, will support BJP agitation by reaching in large numbers in the respective districts. He said the message has already been communicated to all the district units.
To deal with the situation, DIG Moradabad range Gulab Singh said while the Section 144 is already in place, “heavy police and paramilitary force have been deployed to maintain law and order”.