Bhojshala on Basant Panchami, the day after locals attack RSS office, leaders’ houses

No one was injured in the stone-pelting that broke a few window panes but the attack led to tension in the town.

Written by Milind Ghatwai | Dhar | Updated: February 14, 2016 1:55 am
Bhojshala row, dhar, RSS office, RSS office stoned, dhar RSS office stoned, dhar RSS office, basant panchami, Madhya Pradesh, Hindu activists stone, india news RSS office vandalised by locals in Dhar (MP) earlier today. (Source: ANI)

A day after they claimed victory for praying inside the Bhojshala-Kamal Maula mosque during the time meant for namaz, houses of leaders of Bhoj Utsav Samiti (BUS), which spearheads the movement to liberate the disputed structure, and the RSS office were stoned on Saturday by angry Hindu activists, who alleged a sellout.

The anger against the leaders had started building up from Friday evening, when local Hindus started voicing their displeasure publicly and on social media, within hours of the BUS and Dharma Jagaran Manch (DJM) withdrawing their call to boycott the puja, claiming that the administration had accepted all their demands.

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The sudden change of stand around 1.15 pm, by which time the administration had managed to hold a token namaz by taking a few Muslims on the rooftop, left Hindu devotees confused because till that point, they had been asked not to enter the shrine and instead make offerings at a havan kund outside. Thousands of them had heard the announcements repeatedly on the public address system.

Bhojshala row, dhar, RSS office, RSS office stoned, dhar RSS office stoned, dhar RSS office, basant panchami, Madhya Pradesh, Hindu activists stone, india news The RSS office in Dhar. (Source: Express photo by Milind Ghatwai)

Late on Friday night, angry locals started abusing Vijay Singh Rathore and Ashok Jain of BUS and Gopal Sharma of DJM, who are associated with the RSS. They alleged that events that unfolded on Friday were scripted in advance when the leaders met senior minister Narottam Mishra and state BJP general secretary Arvind Menon, who coordinates with the RSS, in the past few days.

The activists involved in Saturday’s attack reportedly met at Motibaug, from where a huge procession of Hindus began on Friday, and targeted the RSS office in Trimurti Nagar and the houses of Rathore and Jain. No one was injured in the stone-pelting that broke a few window panes but the attack led to tension in the town.

Fourteen people were identified from the video footage from cameras installed in the RSS office and the home of Rathore, whose father was a BJP MLA. Vijay himself was a contender for a ticket from Dhar in the last assembly elections. One of the allegations levelled against him was that he scuttled the movement in bargain for the ticket in the next election.

“The attackers could be our men or they could be from rival camps,’’ Rathore said without elaborating. He said the video footage had been provided to the police. Denying the allegation of sellout, he claimed that no namaz was offered and that the puja that began at 12.30 continued uninterrupted till sunset, including the time Hindus were not supposed to be inside to allow namaz between 1 pm and 3 pm, an arrangement finalised by the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) which protects the disputed shrine.

Dhar SP Rajesh Hingankar said three of the 14 accused had been arrested.

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First Published on: February 14, 2016 12:12 am
  1. A
    Aap
    Feb 13, 2016 at 8:59 am
    Hindu Muslims have lived in harmony. They will continue to do so and p the test of time.
    Reply
    1. A
      Abhijit Bhattacharya
      Feb 15, 2016 at 12:22 am
      The pseudo-hindu and semiliterate sangh parivar will soon start fomenting more trouble in frustration as more and more people will start rejecting them
      Reply
      1. D
        Dinesh Singh
        Feb 14, 2016 at 8:08 pm
        True face of RSS is exposed. They are not pareiotic as they claim. They are there to grab power by fooling hindus.
        Reply
        1. R
          Raghu Panjala
          Feb 13, 2016 at 1:46 pm
          Now we know what RSS does? Everyone is so worried of some students agitating in univs and missing studies.Why not worry about students used by RSS ,use and thrown away? What is that they gain from these nautankis?
          Reply
          1. K
            kamath Ramesh
            Feb 13, 2016 at 1:36 pm
            It is good that the day went peacefully. Both communities offered their prayers. Govt showed the true sense of secularism.
            Reply
            1. D
              Devisahai Meena
              Feb 13, 2016 at 9:18 am
              Many such hindus later or sooner ,have come to know that RSS is an anti-hindu group.
              Reply
              1. A
                anon
                Feb 13, 2016 at 8:03 am
                Very funny. ..
                Reply
                1. S
                  Shibu
                  Feb 14, 2016 at 11:57 am
                  absolutely correct. the earlier RSS is banned India can leave in peace.
                  Reply
                  1. S
                    Suresh Hattangadi
                    Feb 14, 2016 at 11:10 am
                    At least RSS is open and known but you are taking potshots hiding behind a pseudonym.
                    Reply
                    1. S
                      Suresh Hattangadi
                      Feb 14, 2016 at 11:12 am
                      First know what the students of JNU were sloganeering.If you knew you will not side with them.
                      Reply
                      1. S
                        S.Kiyanoosh,USA
                        Feb 15, 2016 at 12:27 am
                        India requires a Socialist govt who will imbibe spirits of internationalism and liberal modern secular ideas/ideals into people. Religion divides, hardly unites.
                        Reply
                        1. A
                          Augustus
                          Feb 13, 2016 at 12:58 pm
                          Patriotic fervour at its height
                          Reply
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