Intelligence agencies alert Centre, police on VHP event

Intelligence agencies have alerted the Centre and Delhi Police about a possible communal flare-up as the right-wing groups perched on motorcycles and trucks drive around Delhi in the run-up to a congregation planned by the Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP) at Ramlila Maidan on December 9.

Delhi Police was apprised that around 500 rallies have been planned and most of them are being taken out in areas close to Muslim-dominated areas.

The report to the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) said that such mobilisation was noticed in around 2,000 small and large colonies in Delhi.

In Trilokpuri for instance, posters by the Social Democratic Party of India (SDPI) were found which said that “Babri Masjid will be constructed again”.

VHP spokesperson Vinod Bansal claimed that in the past 15 days around 80,000 people participated in meetings, gatherings and dharam sabhas (religious congregations) for the mega event on December 9 at Ramlila Maidan to press for construction of Ram temple in Ayodhya. On December 6, 1992, the disputed Babri Masjid mosque was demolished by karsevaks (volunteers) leading to a wave of communal violence in many parts of the country.

“In the past month, several meetings were organised at 150 places. In the motorcycle rallies alone, around 40,000 people would have participated. We have taken permission from police and they also accompany us during these rallies,” Mr. Bansal claimed.

‘No permission taken’

However, at least five senior Delhi police officers, in-charge of districts, told The Hindu that they did not receive any application by any group seeking permission to carry out the rallies. Officers also expressed helplessness in taking action against these groups due to political patronage they enjoy.

“There is an increased movement of trucks and other vehicles with men chanting slogans on loudspeakers demanding construction of Ram temple. They pass through silence zones like hospitals and schools. They have not taken any permission but since there is no crime committed, we cannot stop them. We keep an eye for any trouble they might create,” said a senior Delhi police officer.

Another officer added that anticipating major mobilisation for the VHP’s mega rally, they have intensified police patrolling in sensitive areas. Police personnel in plain clothes have been deployed in sensitive areas to keep eye on anti-social elements.

“We have not received any communication regarding bike rallies organised all over the city by any organiser and not received any complaint against the rally organisers. But we are keeping eye on the bike rallies to prevent any law and order crisis,” said the police officer.

Delhi Police Commissioner Amulya Patnaik convened a meeting on Wednesday of all district DCPs to discuss security preparation for the rally at Ramlila Maidan.

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Printable version | Nov 27, 2020 3:12:07 AM |

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