Massive ‘Shobha Yatras’ held during Hanuman Jayanti

The massive rallies organised by the VHP and Bajrang Dal to mark the Hanuman Jayanti here on Thursday, provided a platform for Swami Paripoornananda Saraswati of Sreepeetham to profess that only those believing in Lord Rama should live in the country and those not believing in Lord Rama should go to other countries.

The Hanuman Jayanti rallies, named as ‘Shobha Yatras’, started from Hanuman temple in Gowliguda and ended at another Hanuman temple in Tadbund in Secunderabad. The processionists later gathered at Imperial Gardens, where a host of speakers addressed them.

Security blanket

Authorities threw a virtual security blanket all along the procession route by deploying a massive police force, in view of the flare up of violence in 2010 at Musheerabad. This year, police did not allow the procession to go via Musheerabad and diverted it via Ashoknagar. Those who had been keeping a watch on the procession admitted that this year the participation was much higher.

Throughout the day, vehicular traffic movement went haywire all along the procession route, as youngsters took out several rallies holding aloft saffron flags and raising full-throated ‘Jai Shri Ram’ slogans.

Speeches delivered at Imperial Gardens and also from a stage erected at Sultan Bazar, appeared to have been prepared carefully to avoid giving the political touch directly.

“Idols of Lord Rama should be installed in the Parliament and all State Assembly buildings,” Swami Paripoornananda Saraswati said at Sultan Bazar.

Devotees of Lord Rama should strive to fill India with saffron flags. Ram temple could be built in Ayodhya by next year if there was a combined effort, the swami said as the slogan shouting and flag waving youngsters cheered and clapped.

The swami made a veiled political reference when he said: “Persons who keep Hanuman idols in their pockets would be our leaders.”

The crowds responded raising Jai Hanuman slogans. He gave a new interpretation to Darwin’s theory of evolution, when he said humans evolved from monkeys and activists of Bajrang Dal who worship Lord Hanuman would become the main source of humanity. Other speakers from different right-wing organisations, who spoke at the Imperial Garden meeting also ensured that Lord Rama was the central theme of their speeches.

'Everyone must believe in Ram'

RSS leader Ajit Mahapatro said that everyone living in India must think about Rama. The rallies on Hanuman Jayanti day were minor in nature some five or six years ago.

Over a period of time, the processions being taken out on Hanuman Jayanti have been increasing, driving police to make elaborate security arrangements in the communally sensitive Hyderabad. Police became more cautious about ‘Shobha Yatra’ following outbreak of violence during the rally three years ago.

Not willing to take any chances on the security front in the wake of terrorist attack at Dilsukhnagar two months ago, police officials deployed huge contingents of forces for the ‘Shobha Yatra’ on Thursday. The city police had deployed 88 platoons of APSP and four companies of RAF.

Though there was huge participation in the rally, the gathering at the meeting in Imperial Garden was much smaller.

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