VIP security for priest who took on Ramdev,aide

The list of VIPs protected by the state is getting longer by the day.

Written by VijaitaSingh | New Delhi | Published:May 17, 2013 1:19 am

The list of “VIPs” protected by the state is getting longer by the day. The latest on it is a priest from Haridwar who has complained to the CBI against Baba Ramdev.

The home ministry cleared Y category security for Acharya Pramod Krishnam,president of Akhil Bhartiya Sant Samiti,last month and directed the Central Industrial Security Force to depute its men for his protection when he is in Uttar Pradesh.

Krishnam claimed he didn’t ask for security. “I never applied for security. I was contacted by the IB a month ago. They said I faced a threat to my life from some terrorist organisations. In the past I have spoken vociferously against Indian Mujahideen and also against people involved in cases related to right-wing terror but I never thought I would have a threat to my life,” he said. “Now that the government has provided me security,I would request them to extend it to me all over the country. How can they have separate sets of rules for different places?”

Krishnam came to prominence when his complaint to the President in 2011 led to the CBI and the Enforcement Directorate registering cases for foreign exchange violation against Ramdev and his aide Balkrishna. Krishnam had alleged that Balkrishna was not an Indian citizen and that he had considerable stake in the yoga guru’s ill-gotten property,a claim later confirmed by the CBI investigation.

The list of VIP protectees has steadily risen since Sushil Kumar Shinde was appointed home minister last year. In the past few weeks,Shinde’s ministry has provided Z category security to Information and Broadcasting minister Manish Tewari,Punjab Congress chief P S Bajwa and Congress MP Ravneet Singh Bittu,who is the grandson of former Punjab chief minister Beant Singh,and Y category security to Bahujan Samaj Party MP from Uttar Pradesh Seema Upadhyay.

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